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112917frontWall.jpg

Replica of Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall

The Wall That Heals Coming to Crivitz Aug. 30 - Sept. 2

Issue Date: November 29, 2017

The Wall That Heals, a replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, along with a mobile Education Center, is coming to Crivitz Aug. 30 through Sept. 2 at Crivitz Community Veteran's Park, according to Village President John Deschane, co-chair for the event. It will be open 24 hours a day and free to the public. The Wall That Heals honors the more than three million Americans who served in the U.S. Armed forces in the Vietnam War and it bears the names of the more than 58,000 men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is one of the most visited memorials in our nation's capital, with more than 5.3 million visitors each year. However, many Americans have not been able to visit what has become known to many as "The Wall." The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF), the organization that built The Wall in 1982, wants to give all veterans and their family members across America an opportunity to see the Memorial.

"VVMF is pleased to bring The Wall That Heals mobile exhibit to Crivitz 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 opportunity 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. Locally it is sponsored by the Crivitz Business Association.

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.

Deschane and co-chair Sally Witt stated in a fundraising letter, "One of the most moving experiences one can have is to view the names of the service members who are listed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, DC. Most of us may not have the opportunity to view this memorial in Washington, but we will be able to see a replica of the Wall in Crivitz Community Veterans Park in Crivitz Aug. 30 through Sept. 2, 2018. There will be other displays honoring fallen soldiers, from all wars, in the park during the time the Wall is displayed."

The letter continues, "The cost to bring the Wall to Crivitz, including an advertising and promotional budget, will be approximately $12,000. Help will also be needed to set up, guide visitors, and take down the display.

"Our committee is in the earliest stages of discovering what we must do to make this event successful. The first step is to raise the necessary funds. Can you help? The Crivitz Business Association (CBA) has agreed to sponsor this event and donations can be made to a fund set up by the CBA to cover the expense of this display.

"We are asking you/your organization for help in making this moving experience available to the residents and guests in the Crivitz area. Your financial gifts may be mailed to CBA/Wall That Heals, PO Box 202, Crivitz, WI 54114, or dropped off at any Farmers and Merchants Bank location. If your group or organization is willing to help in anyway (financially and/or helpers) in making this display a success, please contact Sally or John at the numbers listed below."

If questions or who would like someone to address their group about this event is invited to contact John Deschane at 715 927 4616 or Sally Witt at 715 938 2424.

"Thank you in advance for your support of this exhibit honoring those who gave their lives that we may be free," the letter concludes.


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