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December 1, 2017
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Wall That Heals, a replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial along with a mobile Education Center, is coming to Fitchburg, Massachusetts. The memorial will be arriving in Fitchburg on July 11, 2018 and will be on display July 12 - July 15, 2018 at Crocker Field. It will be open 24 hours with free admission to the public. The Wall That Heals honors the three million Americans who served in the U.S. Armed forces during the Vietnam War and bears the names of the more than 58,000 men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice.
The Vietnam Veteran's Memorial Fund, Inc. (VVMF) is the nonprofit organization authorized by Congress in 1980 to fund and build the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. What has become known to many as “The Wall,” is one of the most visited memorials at our nation’s capital, with more than 5.3 million visitors each year. However, many Americans have not had the opportunity to visit The Wall because of its fixed nature.
“VVMF is pleased to bring The Wall That Heals mobile exhibit to Fitchburg to allow local veterans and their family members a chance to visit The Wall and honor and remember those who have served and sacrificed,” said Jim Knotts, president and CEO of VVMF. “We hope it provides an opportunity for healing and an educational experience for the whole community on the impact of the Vietnam War on America.”
More than 250,000 people visited The Wall That Heals in 2016. Since its debut in 1996, the exhibit has been on display in nearly 500 U.S. communities in addition to an April 1999 tour of the Four Provinces of Ireland and a visit to Canada in 2005. Hosting The Wall That Heals provides a community with a multi-day experience that includes an educational experience for local schools and organizations on the history of the Vietnam era and The Wall. The exhibit includes The Wall replica and a mobile Education Center comprised of: digital displays of photos of service members whose names are on The Wall; letters and memorabilia representative of items left at The Wall in D.C.; a map of Vietnam and a chronological overview of the Vietnam War. The exhibits tell the story of the Vietnam War, The Wall and the era surrounding the conflict, and are designed to put American experiences in Vietnam in a historical and cultural context.
VVMF coordinates local stops of The Wall That Heals and the accompanying mobile Education Center. The current schedule and more information can be found at: www.thewallthatheals.org. The 2018 national The Wall That Heals tour is hauled through a partnership with the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) and the trucking industry and generously sponsored by USAA.
The replica Wall is approximately 250 feet in length, and like the original Memorial is erected in a chevron-shape. The replica is constructed of powder-coated aluminum, supported by an aluminum frame, and is made up of 24 individual panels, each containing six columns of names.
The names on The Wall That Heals replicate the names on The Wall in Washington, D.C. As on The Wall, the names are listed alphabetically by day of casualty. Beginning at the center/apex, the names start on the East Wall (right-hand side) working their way out to the end of that wing, picking up again at the far end of the West Wall (left-hand side) and working their way back in to the center/apex. Thus, the beginning and ending of the conflict are joined at the center, signifying an epoch in American history.
The Wall That Heals is transported from community to community by a trailer with cases built into its sides, allowing it to serve as a mobile Education Center that tells the story of the Vietnam War, The Wall and the divisive era in American history.
About VVMF and the Education Center at The Wall
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) is the nonprofit organization that built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. in 1982. VVMF is dedicated to honoring and preserving the legacy of service in America and educating all generations about the impact of the Vietnam War and era through programs, ceremonies and education materials.
Three decades after building The Wall, the mission continues as VVMF raises funds to build the Education Center at The Wall. The Center will be an interactive learning facility on the National Mall where our military heroes' stories and sacrifice will never be forgotten. The Education Center will feature the faces and stories of the more than 58,000 men and women on The Wall and honor America's Legacy of Service, including those serving in our nation's Armed Forces today. Time Warner is the Lead Gift Benefactor in the campaign to build the Education Center at The Wall. To learn more about VVMF and the future Education Center at The Wall, visit www.vvmf.org or call 202-393-0090.
For more information:
Michele Marino, Veterans Commissioner