Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Those Who Serve

There is a power to silence.

Bagpipers at Highland Park Cemetery honoring Those Who Serve

Yesterday was a very important day for me. I traveled behind an amazing group of people, the Legion Riders ,who escorted The Dignity Memorial® Vietnam Wall™. Personally affected by the war in Iraq, I felt honored to be at this ceremony.

The men and women who are volunteering to bring this to Northeast Indiana are truly one-of-a-kind, caring and compassionate people. I wept from the moment the first motorcycle pulled away. The journey down I-69 from Auburn involving these motorcycles, the vehicles, the police officers and sheriff deputies is one I will never forget.

I urge you to step into the silence and 'hear' what it says to you.
Whether you support the war or any military action, this is one trip worth making. Consider supporting the people who volunteer to go wherever they are needed.

The display will be open after a ceremony at 6:15 PM on Friday, August 10, 2007, in Fort Wayne, IN, at the Highland Park Cemetery. There will also be a ceremony on Saturday morning at 9:00 AM and Sunday's closing ceremony at 4:00 PM.
The Wall will be open 24 hours a day to accommodate anyone. Readers will take turns reading all 58,178 names.

Firefighters Guard Entrance with Flag

Firefighters hung the enormous memorial flag which so often hangs at funerals for our fallen soldiers. It was a solemn and moving experience to watch the procession of Riders, Police, Firemen, and community who brought the opportunity for reflection and healing to our area.
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The Wall Arrives --Ceremony with Community Members and The Legion Riders

From their website above: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is the most visited National Park Service site in Washington, D.C. The monument commemorates more than 58,000 U.S. soldiers who died or are missing-in-action during the Vietnam War, and has long been noted for its tremendous emotional impact.

Although the war exacted a significant toll both at home and overseas, millions of Americans may never visit our nation's capital to experience "The Wall."

Known as the Dignity Memorial® Vietnam WallTM, the replica has been displayed in more than 200 cities across the country. Millions of Americans have visited the monument to pay tribute to the service-men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for flag and country.


Charlotte A. Weybright said...

I believe volunteers are still needed, especially in the area of reading names.

We are taking turns reading for 20 minutes at at time. On my first access TV show last week, I hosted two individuals who have been instrumental in bringing the Wall to Fort Wayne. They mentioned that the name reading seems to be most intimidating to people.

In 2001, when the Wall was here at the same location, 15,000 visitors stopped by. It really is a beautiful memorial and well worth visiting.

Jennifer Jeffrey, Chair LPAC said...

Thank you Charlotte. Who do people contact to volunteer?

Charlotte A. Weybright said...

Sorry I didn't get back to you more quickly. You can contact 432-3914. I just spent three hours at the Wall - from 4:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. reading names and helping in the information booth.

I think they are expecting large crowds in the afternoons and the evenings.

I imagine if you even just showed up, they could put a person to good use.

It is such a rewarding experience.

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