BOISE -- The top U.S. commander in Afghanistan on Sunday issued a statement marking four years that a U.S. soldier has been held captive by the Taliban.
Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford addressed U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's family directly: "I want to say that we know you have not given up hope, and neither have we."
The 27-year-old Bergdahl of Hailey, Idaho, is the only known American soldier held captive from the Afghan war.
He disappeared from his base in southeastern Afghanistan on June 30, 2009, and is believed held in Pakistan.
In Hailey, yellow ribbons continue to hang tied to the base of light poles and trees, symbolizing the town is not whole.
At a June 22nd rally in Bergdahl’s hometown, 2,000 people prayed for Bowe’s safe return to his loved ones.
“Bowe we love you we support you and are eagerly waiting your return home,” said Bowe’s mother Jani at the rally.
Bowe's father, Bob Bergdahl, told the crowd that years ago Bowe told his dad that going to Afghanistan was his role. He wanted to help the people of that country.
“He is just one of dozens of young people from this community that went off to war after 9/11 answered the call of their country,” he said.
Bowe's parents stayed private about their son for years, but at that rally, they didn't hold back. Their strong presence and emotional words struck a chord with the audience.
“I will not leave you on the battlefield Bowe, these people here will not leave you on the battlefield, your country will not leave you on the battlefield, and you are not forgotten,” said Bob.
New this month -- talks of possible negotiations between to the U.S. and the Taliban to exchange Bowe for prisoners at Guantanamo Bay.
“A father does not leave his son alone on the battlefield. I don't live here, I live in Afghanistan,” said Bob. “I might be standing here but I am living vicariously through my son.”