Flags ordered to half-staff for highly-decorated Iowa veteran - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Flags ordered to half-staff for highly-decorated Iowa veteran

Flags ordered to half-staff for highly-decorated Iowa veteran

Posted: Updated:
DES MOINES (KWWL) -

American flags across Iowa will be flown at half-staff on Thursday to honor Iowa native Col. George “Bud” Day.

Gov. Terry Branstad has ordered flags to be flown at half-staff from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. on Thursday.

Col. Day will be buried at Barrancas National Cemetery at Pensacola Naval Air Station on Thursday.

According to the Governor’s office, Day was born in Sioux City. In 1942, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II. He served in the Pacific theater.

After the war, Day earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Morningside College and a law degree from the University of South Dakota.

In 1950, Day received an officer’s commission as a 2nd Lt. in Company M, 133rd Infantry Regiment, Iowa Army National Guard in Sioux City. In 1951, he was transferred to the U.S. Air Force Reserve, where he trained to be a pilot.

Day served in U.S. Air Force during the Korean War and the Vietnam War.

In 1967, Day’s plane was shot down and he was captured by the North Vietnamese Army. For five and a half years, he was a prisoner of war -- at one point sharing a cell with U.S. Sen. John McCain.

Day was released from captivity in March 1973 and retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1977.

During his military career, Day earned more than 70 awards for combat, including the nation’s highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his actions in Vietnam.

After retiring from the military, Day began a law practice and advocated for veterans’ issues.

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