Veterans Day post: Kosciusko and Attala County celebrate Bill Bailey Day (video)

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Here’s a great Veterans Story from the Breezy News archives:
Bill Bailey was shot down and taken prisoner during the Vietnam War. He was captured by Vietnamese forces and spent five years and eight months as a prisoner of war. He was rescued during Operation Homecoming on Feb. 18 1973.
On the 50th anniversary of his capture, Attala County and the City of Kosciusko celebrated “Bill Bailey Day” on the steps of of the Attala County Courthouse.

June 28, 2017, is now officially “Bill Bailey Day” in Attala County and the City of Kosciusko.

Friends, family, and representatives from both city and county offices celebrated the occasion Wednesday morning on the steps of the Attala County Courthouse.

Today marks the 50th anniversary of the day Cmdr. Bill Bailey was shot down and taken prisoner during the Vietnam War. He was captured by Vietnamese forces and spent five years and eight months as a prisoner of war. He was rescued during Operation Homecoming on Feb. 18 1973.

Retired USAF Brig. Gen. Donny Sims opened Wednesday’s ceremony with background on Cmdr. Bailey’s story.

Kosciusko Mayor Jimmy Cockroft then presented a resolution to Rita Brown, Bailey’s sister, on behalf of the City of Kosciusko.  Kary Ellington, President of the Attala County Board of Supervisors, presented a flag that had been flown at the Attala County Courthouse in honor of Cmdr. Bailey.

Additionally, flags are being flown today in Cmdr. Bailey’s honor at the Mississippi State Capitol and the United State’s Capitol by MS Rep. Jason White and U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson, respectively. According to Sims, those flags will be presented to the Bailey family at a later date.

Bailey was not in attendance at the ceremony. He chose to spend the occasion with his family.

Bailey grew up in Attala County, but attended school in the Barnes community. After finishing high school, he went to Holmes Community College on a basketball scholarship. After Holmes, Bailey enlisted in the military.

After returning home from the war, Bailey returned to school and earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Ole Miss and a Master’s Degree from Georgetown University before becoming a teacher and an assistant principal. He is a current resident of Anderson, South Carolina.

 

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