6994th Airman Featured in Upcoming Book About Wisconsin’s Missing in Action Servicemen
Sat, June 2 2018
MADISON, WI – “Todd was an intelligent individual who knew what he wanted to do and how to achieve his goals.” Staff Sergeant Todd Melton is still remembered today, 45 years after he went missing during the Vietnam War. Raised in Milwaukee, Todd served as a linguist during the war with the 6994th Security Squadron. His aircraft, Baron 52, went down over Laos shortly after the signing of the Paris Peace Accords officially ended the war. Todd’s story – his childhood in Wisconsin, his training, and the strange circumstances surrounding the downed aircraft – is one of 37 stories told in the upcoming book, Wisconsin’s 37: The Lives of Those Missing in Action in the Vietnam War.
Wisconsin’s 37 tells of the lives of the 37 men from Wisconsin classified as “Missing in Action” from the Vietnam War. From the Gulf of Tonkin until the Paris Peace Accords, in Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia, the men of Wisconsin experienced nearly every aspect of the Vietnam War. Their stories are as unique as the men themselves.
More than just a military book, though, Wisconsin’s 37 focuses on how these individuals lived rather than just the circumstances that led to their disappearances. Growing up in familiar places all around Wisconsin, readers will relate to their experiences and values, and perhaps appreciate their sacrifices all the more.
Heavily based on nearly 200 interviews from family, friends, and fellow servicemen, Wisconsin’s 37 gives life to the names on the Wall, and highlights the importance of remembering those we have lost.
Author Erin Miller is a 2018 graduate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she holds a B.A. in history and an M.S. in communication sciences and disorders. It has been her honor to record these stories. John Sharpless is a history professor at the UW.
The book will be available for purchase in early June through McFarland and Company’s website and Amazon.com. All royalties from the sale of this book will be donated to the Wisconsin Veterans Museum in Madison and the Highground Memorial in Neillsville, Wisconsin.