On February 10th, within the framework of the U.S.-Russia Joint Commission on POWs/MIAs – Battle Brotherhood, a landmark meeting was held with the following guests taking part in it:
Chairman of the Board, The National League of POW/MIA Families
Head, International Round-the-World March of Veterans Battle Brotherhood
Acting Head of the Russian Side’s Washington Office
U.S.-Russia Joint Commission on POW/MIAs
The National League of Families of American Prisoners and Missing in Southeast Asia was incorporated in the District of Columbia on May 28th, 1970.
The League’s sole mission is to obtain the release of all prisoners, the fullest possible accounting for the missing and repatriation of all recoverable remains of those who died serving the United States during the Vietnam War.
Voting membership is comprised of wives, children, parents, siblings and other close blood and legal relatives of Americans who were or are listed as Prisoners of War (POW), Missing in Action (MIA), Killed in Action/Body not Recovered (KIA/BNR) and returned American Vietnam War POWs.
Associate membership is comprised of veterans and other concerned citizens. The League is a nonprofit humanitarian organization. It is financed by donations from the families, veterans and others.
The League was created by Sybil Stockdale, Evelyn Grubb and Mary Crowe as an originally small group of POW/MIA wives in Coronado, California and Hampton Roads, Virginia in 1967. Sybil Stockdale’s husband, Navy Commander James Stockdale, was shot down in 1965 and she was determined to make the American people aware of the mistreatment of U.S. POWs.
The League’s mission has been to obtain the release of all prisoners, the fullest possible accounting for the missing and repatriation of all recoverable remains of those Americans killed in the Vietnam War in Southeast Asia.
In October 1968, the first POW/MIA story was published. As a result of that publicity, the families began communicating with each other, and the group grew in strength from 50 to 100, to 300, and kept growing. The POW/MIA family member delegation met with the North Vietnamese delegation in Paris requesting information about countless thousands of American POWs and MIAs during the Vietnam War.
In May 1970, a special ad hoc meeting of the families was held at Constitution Hall in Washington, DC, at which time the League’s charter was adopted. Elected by the voting membership, the League’s Board of Directors meets regularly to determine League policy and direction. Board Members, Regional Coordinators, responsible for activities in multi-state areas, and State Coordinators represent the League in most states.
Chairman of the Board is Ann Mills-Griffiths, MIA sister, has been with the League from mid-1978 until present moment.