Vet Voices

Honoring their sacrifice: Traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial arrives in Monroe County

Community

WOODSFIELD, Ohio (WTRF) – It’s a traveling reminder of an incredible sacrifice. 

More than 58,000 names etched on a wall. Each representing a son, a father, a brother, nurses and even chaplains who died in Vietnam. 

While the permanent monument is in Washington, D.C., the Moving Wall is in Monroe County this weekend. 

There are people who died on their first day of duty and people who died on their last day of duty in Vietnam.

Anthony McSwords, Director/CVSO, Monroe County Veterans Service Office

Their sacrifice knows no time limits. 

As the Vietnam War moves farther into our nation’s history, it’s still very much etched in the minds of those who served, much like the names on the wall. 

We wanted to be sure that we paid honor to those gentlemen one last time and gave their families time to come, and other Vietnam veterans time to come, and have that closure that they are probably seeking out at this time. 

Anthony McSwords, Director/CVSO, Monroe County Veterans Service Office

For Monroe County, the loss from the Vietnam War was great. 

I went to Beallsville High School where we had the highest per death capita ratio in the United States. I was at the wall in Beallsville when it showed up 17 years ago and it’s time to bring it back to honor these individuals.

Kirt Sloan, President, Vietnam Wall Organizational Committee

“Eleven Sons” of Monroe County died fighting for our freedoms, six of which were from Beallsville. 

Monroe County remembers and honors Glenn Eugene McCammon, Jack Pittman, Duane Theodore Greenlee, Charles Glenn Schnegg, Richard Lee Rucker, James Alvin Ravencraft, William Robert Lucas, Dwight Herbert Ball, Steven Michael Janeda, Phillip Michael Brandon and Dale Robert Hood.

As a veteran myself, I know what to some degree what some of these people have went through. Obviously not what these folks on the wall went through, but it’s important to us that people not only say that they have these freedoms, to understand what the cost was for that.

Anthony McSwords, Director/CVSO, Monroe County Veterans Service Office

After more than a year of waiting for its arrival, the county is making sure it’s a fitting tribute to our heroes, and a place for other Vietnam Veterans to remember.

We had a dream and it’s true, so we build it and they’ll be come.

Kirt Sloan, President, Vietnam Wall Organizational Committee

The Moving Wall is a half-size replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, but still carries the full weight of honor and remembrance. 

Somebody who’s a Vietnam veteran, you see that Vietnam hat, be sure to thank them for their service. Shake their hand and if they’re willing to share. Listen. There’s a whole lot of history that’ll be walking around this place.

Anthony McSwords, Director/CVSO, Monroe County Veterans Service Office

The Moving Wall will be open to visitors round the clock until Monday morning at the Monroe County Fairgrounds. 

There is an opening ceremony Friday evening at 6:00 p.m. A service of remembrance will also be held Saturday and Sunday evening at the same time.

Everyone is welcome to attend. 

There will also be a Poker Run at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, which raises money for Veterans in Distress. The organization helps veterans facing financial hardships.

The Camouflage Army Band will perform Sunday at 3:00 p.m. at the Historic Monroe Theatre. They will also participate in the closing ceremony Sunday evening along with U.S. Congressman Bill Johnson.

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