Colonel George E. Day is the advisor to the staff judge advocate Eglin AFB,?
POWs depart bus at Hanoi airport.
Colonel Day is greeted by U. S. officer and directed to plane.
Evacuation plane personnel wait at plane.
Interior of C-141 with POWs. Colonel Day giving thumbs up sign and talking to flight nurse.
C-141 taxiing and preparing for POWs to deplane at Clark AB, Republic of the Philippines.
Colonel Day deplanes, salutes, and shakes hands with welcoming party.
Colonel Day being greeted by the crowd.
SCOPE: This coverage is of Colonel George E. Day, USAF, returning to the United States after 67 months of captivity as a POW in North Vietnam.
NOTE TO EDITOR: Please credit Department of Defense in title or commentary.
This motion picture released to UPI for duplication and distribution to interested television and newsfilm pool members. This original footage may not be cut and is top be returned within 72 hours to the Department of Defense Audiovisual Division, Room 2E 773, the Pentagon, Washington, D.C. 20301.
EDITORS NOTE: A retirement ceremony will be held on January 20 at 3:45 o.m. at Eglin AFB, Fort Walton Beach, Florida.
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Background: Colonel George E. Day is the advisor to the staff judge advocate Eglin AFB, Florida. He has held this position since 1976. Tomorrow, January 20, Colonel Day will retire from the U. S. Air Force.
Colonel Day was born in Sioux City, Iowa, on February 24, 1925. He holds a Bachelor of science degree and a Doctor of Humane Letters (Honorary) from Morningside College in Sioux City. He has also been awarded a Master of Arts degree from St. Louis University and a Juris Doctor from the University of South Dakota. He is a member of the South Dakota bar and the Florida bar.
Colonel Day joined the Marine Corps in 1942 and served 30 months in the South Pacific as a noncommissioned officer. He received an appointment as a second lieutenant in the Air National Guard in 1950 after completing requirements for a Juris Doctorate.
Colonel Day was called to active duty in the Air Force in 1951 and entered jet pilot training. He has served two tours in the Far East as a fighter-bomber pilot during the Korean War. He has flown worldwide with the 12th Fighter Wing, 20th Fighter Wing, 4th Tactical Fighter Wing, 107th Tactical Fighter Group, 31st Fighter Wing, and 37th Fighter Wing. He has been credited with surviving the first "no chute" bailout from a burning jet fighter in England.
In April 1964, Colonel Day was assigned as an F-100 assistant operations officer at Tuy Hoa Air Base, Republic of Vietnam. He later moved to Phu Cat Air Base, where he organized and became the first commander of the "Misty Super FAC's F-100 Squadron".
Shot down over North Vietnam on August 26, 1967, he spent 67 months as a prisoner of war. Colonel Day was the only POW to escape from prison in North Vietnam and then be recaptured by the Viet Cong in the South.
At the time he was shot down, Colonel Day was one of the nation's most experienced jet fighter pilots with 4,500 hours of single engine jet time and more than 5,000 hours of flying time. He has flown most U. S. fighters from the F-80 through the F-4.
Colonel Day holds nearly 70 military decorations and awards (including the Medal of Honour) of which more than 50 are for combat. Most notable are the Air Force Cross, the Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Air Medal with nine Oak Lead Clusters, the Bronze Star for valour with two Oak Leaf Clusters, and the Purple Heart with three clusters. He was presented Vietnam's highest medal for valour -- the National Order of Vietnam, two Vietnamese Gallantry Crosses, and Vietnamese wings. He wears ll Campaign Battle Stars.
Colonel Day is married to the former Doris Merlene Sorensen of Sioux City. They have four children: Steven, 22; George 15; Sandra, 13; and Sonja, 13.