Wedding Ring Returned to Vietnam Veteran

This past Veteran’s Day was a very special one for James Hivner, a former Vietnam veteran and POW. Colonel Hivner was captured by the North Vietnamese in October 1965 after he was forced to eject from his F-4C Phantom fighter-bomber. He spent seven and a half years as a POW, much of it at the infamous Hanoi Hilton. When captured, then-Captain Hivner was stripped of all his possessions, including his wedding ring. Captain Hivner ultimately returned home to his family, but his ring was not returned. Years later another veteran, Rick Tolley, came into possession of the ring and determined to find its owner. Tolley’s former son-in-law was working in Vietnam and was approached by a retired Vietnamese army soldier who had found the ring in a desk. He gave it to Tolley’s former son-in-law along with Hivner’s dog tag. The son-in-law contacted Tolley who took it upon himself to find Hivner and return the ring. The ring was returned at a Veteran’s Day ceremony at the Cavanaugh Flight Museum in Addison, Texas. To read the full story about the ring’s return and some touching accounts of Colonel Hivner’s Vietnam experiences, go to www.retirees.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123177565.

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