Hi LTC Kevin W. Smith.
I have just completed reading Earl Swifts book 'Where They Lay' and thouroughly enjoyed it and respect the work that is been done to bring these soldiers home.
I stumbled across your email address after searching the web for a few minutes and decided to give it a shot by asking you a few questions.
I`ve always been interested in past battle sites having visited Normandy last year for the D - Day 60th anniversary. My grandfather was one of the very few infantrymen who got out of Gallipoli in one piece, my father having served with the Royal Navy in WWII onboard a Corvette.
Is it possible for me to join a search mission, if you call it that, completely at my own expense. I`m willing to do any work whatsoever to assist the team in there work and am fully aware of the hardships you guys endure to get the job done. I`m physically fit, 30 yrs old and more than motivated for something like this and obviously don`t expect any type of renumeration either. If you could put me in contact with someone who could assist me in this or if you could yourself I would be much appreciated.
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Susie, Thanks so much for getting Earl in touch with me. I just received an E-mail from him, so we're linked up. Thanks also for the kind words. I guarantee you I'll remember that particular site on "Smoke Mountain" for as long as I live. I'm proud we could be a small part of the final answer.
LTC Kevin W. Smith
I have been away from Det 3 for almost three years now, so I'm probably going to be of little value to you. I can tell you that while I commanded there, the only civilians we ever had accompany us were journalists like Mr Swift, or US Government officials like former Vermont Governor Howard Dean. I don't believe you would be allowed to participate, despite your commendable desire to do so. I would recommend you contact the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command @ www.jpac.pacom.mil. Good luck and Best Wishes. KWS
Thanks for your reply. Much appreciated.