Originally Published: 9/20/2016
Before County Executive Steve Stenger spoke at the opening of the POW-MIA Museum in Jefferson Barracks last week, he met two of Missouri’s last remaining ex-prisoners of war, from left, World War II veterans Wilburn Rowden and Ralph Kalberloh. Both are in their 90s and are from Jefferson City. Since the number of ex-POWs in the state has dwindled from a high of 40,000, the Missouri Department of American Ex-Prisoners of War was formally deactivated with a final salute at the Sept. 16 ceremony. Army Air Corps B-17 tail gunner Kalberloh and Air Force draftee Rowden were both shot down over Germany. ‘For their devotion and courage on behalf of their fellow Americans, we honor them today,’ Stenger tweeted.