Family Remembers Marine 44 After MIA in Cambodia

CRESCENT SPRINGS, Ky. (WKRC) – A Kentucky family is still waiting for their United States Marine to come home after 44 years.

Private First Class Gary Lee Hall was last seen on May 15, 1975 when he and two other Marines were left behind after a rescue mission near Koh Tang Island, Cambodia.

On Sunday, members of Hall’s family took part in a ceremony honoring Hall at the Kenton County Veterans Memorial. The remembrance event was put together by the Rolling Thunder KY 5, an organization that advocates for POW and MIA service members.

“His life was cut short, he was just 18,” Janet Meadows, Hall’s sister, said. “He would have made the marines his life. He loved it. That’s all he wanted to do was be in the marines. And he was and that’s what he did. He was a good kid. He would have been the boy next door that everybody loved. “

On May 12, 1975, Cambodian soldiers seized a U.S. container ship, the SS Mayaguez. The Marines came to the rescue but suffered causalities. In the end, Hall and two other marines were left behind. The three were eventually captured and later executed.

“When we found out there are 14 POW, MIA’s from Vietnam here in Kentucky we started doing the research, started pulling their bios,” Todd Matonich of Rolling Thunder KY 5 said. “It’s important for us to really make sure the families know that we don’t forget.”

Hall’s family hasn’t forgotten.

“My brothers remains need to come back home and be buried here in the united states not where he was at,” Meadows said.

Members of the Rolling Thunder KY 5 will be back in our area later in the week for a memorial ride in Fort Thomas.

 Brad Underwood, WKRC

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