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Department Begins Project for Vietnam War Veterans

By Terri Moon Cronk
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 19, 2011 – More than three decades after the war’s end, the Defense Department has begun a project to pay tribute to the nation’s Vietnam War veterans.

The 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration was spawned from the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act.

“It was a very important time period for veterans, because most Vietnam veterans as a whole never received the homecoming that our troops receive now,” said Army Lt. Col. Hunter Holliday, public affairs officer for the commemoration.

At the center of the project is a website, “50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration,” at http://www.vietnamwar50th.com, which will serve as a clearinghouse for information on the war once it is fully functional, a milestone expected this spring.

Information gleaned from the website is expected to be used for myriad purposes, such as to chronicle facts, provide educational materials, and offer resources for a commemorative partners program, Holliday said.

The partners program will comprise guidance and materials for agencies, veterans groups, local government and nongovernment organizations to conduct their own Vietnam War commemoration activities.

The website is expected to play a major role in the campaign, said Jeff Wilson, who handles marketing for the project, noting it will be highly interactive and will include content on historical events, a timeline, photos, documents, video and audio. A calendar will list major Defense-sponsored events.

The website is slated to offer a prelude of activities and ceremonies to:

-- Honor Vietnam War veterans and their families -- including prisoners of war and those listed as missing in action -- for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States.

-- Highlight Armed Forces service during the Vietnam War, in addition to contributions made by government and private organizations.

-- Pay tribute to the contributions made on the home front by U.S. citizens.

-- Highlight the advances in technology, science and medicine in military research made during the war.

-- Recognize contributions and sacrifices made by U.S. allies during the war.

“Hopefully [the commemoration] will be a healing process for the veterans who were never recognized properly when they came home,” Holliday said, noting the volatile political landscape that surrounded the war.


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Related Sites:
50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration


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The opinions expressed in the following comments do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Defense.

2/11/2011 3:14:53 PM
About Bloody time the Government got off its collective behinds and recognized the service of its Veterans and their families, yes families they served also, who served in this war (not conflict like some of them would like to call it). I would like to see them go on step further and that is get the authors and publishers of our children schoolbooks to add more about this war than what has been published. I took a look at my children's history books when they were growing up and all I could find about the Vietnam wars was approximately two paragraphs. I and I think a lot of my Brothers and sisters would like to see at least a chapter if not more on the subject. God Bless the USA and look out for all our people in harms way.
- John Wilch (TSgt, USAF Ret.), Meridian, Idaho

1/20/2011 12:39:01 PM
at age 65 and x4 cardiac bi-pass the last 2 yrs. also blood tests and biopsies, concern of having lymphoma::: and hearing difficulties:: i am unable to even get a lok at , or screen at the va hospital::: my congressman steered me to the vfw rep:: since i was on ship off the coast of vietnam, i have been delayed on any screening of recognised::NOTE:: agent orange contamination was in the wind off the coast of viet-nam< also so was migs:::
- timothy joseph kane , hannibal , mo. 63401

1/20/2011 5:15:42 AM
How do I get pins & patches and maybe posters with the 5oth Commemoration Logo? Would like some of our Associates of Vietnam Veterans Group and projects we'll do to honor our Vietnam Vets. Thank You
- Rose Possien, Sierra Vista, AZ

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