Veteran’s Day is one holiday that deserves more of our attention. After all, those we are honoring fought long and hard for our country’s freedom. One group of veterans in particular, Vietnam vets were treated very poorly upon their return to America, and it is our duty now, to see that they get the respect they richly deserve.
One way we can honor Vietnam vets is through the “Wall of Faces.” Brian Allfrey, the Executive Director of the Utah Press Association explains:
“I would like to share two very important numbers with you: 58,276 and 405. As of Memorial Day 2019, there are 58,276 names on the national Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial, the Wall of Faces, honoring service members of the U.S. Armed Forces who fought in Vietnam, those who died in service in Vietnam/South East Asia, and those service members who went unaccounted for during the war.”
He added, “A 1973 fire in St. Louis Missouri, destroyed their military records, leaving no photos behind. In 2013, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund set out to find the pictures to preserve their legacies and sacrifices. As of October 2019, only 405 names are still missing pictures.”
Many organizations across the country are now taking up the cause to find the missing 405 pictures. I suspect in short order it will be accomplished. We found nearly 58,000 pictures in 6 years. Only 405 more to go- we can do this.
Just look what Andrew Johnson past president of the National Newspaper Association championed. He and the NNA found over 15,000 pictures in a few years time. Johnson speaks from experience, as his own son, First Lieutenant David Johnson was killed in action in Afghanistan.
According to Allfrey, “This cause became extremely personal for him, and he is absolutely thrilled at how close the project is to being completed.”
“One of the greatest ways we can honor veterans is to recognize their work and sacrifice,” Johnson noted. “Let’s finish this project for Veteran’s Day for our nation’s Vietnam heroes.”
I most humbly concur. The VVMF needs our help to find the last 405 missing photos. I encourage everyone to share their story and the veteran’s names. We need to find family or friends of these fallen soldiers to get their pictures and give them the honor they so richly deserve. You can search for the names yourself by going to http://www.vvmf.org/missing-photos. Individuals can upload photos directly to the VVMF website.
You can also contact the VVMF directly by emailing Latosha Adams at email@example.com or by calling 202-765-3774. If none of these suggestions work for you send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will happily share the list with you.
AND to all those veterans out there, I would like to offer my sincere thanks for your service to this great country of ours. The freedoms we enjoy are because thousands upon thousands of men and women made it their mission to protect our country. You deserve the accolades of us all.