POW, Congressional Medal of Honor recipient speaker at Troy summ - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

POW, Congressional Medal of Honor recipient speaker at Troy summer commencement

(Source: WSFA 12 News- Colonel Leo Thorsness) (Source: WSFA 12 News- Colonel Leo Thorsness)
(Source: WSFA 12 News- Colonel Leo Thorsness) (Source: WSFA 12 News- Colonel Leo Thorsness)
TROY, AL (WSFA) -

Troy University's main campus held it's summer commencement exercises Friday. The keynote speaker was a Congressional Medal of Honor recipient and former prisoner of war.

About 325 students from 20 U.S. states and nine nations outside the United States participated in today's exercises, which began at 10 a.m. in the Trojan Arena.

Colonel Leo Thorsness, the speaker, is a retired Air Force colonel and combat pilot, awarded the medal of honor for his actions during Vietnam and a survivor of six years in a North Vietnamese Prisoner of War Camp. He retired from the Air Force due to injuries sustained in his ejection and subsequent torture as a POW.

In 1967, Col. Thorsness flew his F105F into an enemy dogfight after destroying surface-to-air missile sites. Eleven days later, he was shot down and taken prisoner in the POW camp. After his release and retirement he moved to Seattle, Washington with his wife where he served as a Washington State Senator from 1988 to 1992.

The couple now resides in Madison near their daughter and grandchildren, and he also serves as president of the Congressional Medal of Honor Society.

Copyright 2014 WSFA 12 News.  All rights reserved.

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