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Ex-POW with McCain to pay visit

CONYERS - Former Air Force Col. Lee Ellis, who spent time with Republican presidential candidate John McCain as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, will be the guest speaker at the Rockdale County Republican Party meeting Saturday.

Ellis will be in Rockdale County to campaign for his friend in the final three weeks of the campaign. A member of a grassroots organization called Georgia Veterans for John McCain, he has spoken to several groups across the state and in the region endorsing McCain as president.

Ellis will speak at the local Republican Party's monthly meeting at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Honey Creek Golf Club located at 635 Clubhouse Drive. The public is invited to attend.

A veteran of 53 combat missions during the Vietnam War, he was shot down about two weeks after McCain. Both men spent five years in confinement and endured torture from their North Vietnamese captors before they were released in 1973.

Local Republican organizers said Ellis will talk about his time in Vietnam and stump for McCain's campaign.

Ellis, 64, is senior vice president of RightPath Resources in Suwanee, a consulting firm that helps companies manage, develop and retain employees.

Ellis' military decorations include two Silver Stars, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star with Valor device and the Purple Heart for service as a combat pilot and POW. He retired in 1989 as head of the Air Force ROTC program at the University of Georgia.

Jay Jones can be reached at jay.jones@rockdalecitizen.com