Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Michigan VII

A Phantom II, a Huey, and a wall of names. These are all located in Freedom Hill County Park, along 16 Mile Road in Macomb County, Michigan.

The 149 honored here will be forever remembered by family, friends, loved ones, and anyone who happens upon this solemn remembrance.

Sponsored, largely, by VVA Chapter 154, there are several components here that should be noted. In addition to the aircraft, there is the marker with a soldiers words upon it, a marker to those lost to their wounds, physical or otherwise at a later time.

Many quotes are often included at these sites. In fact, you see the same ones in many places,This one, however, seems to be unique.

I suspect that no one foresaw the havoc that Agent Orange and other calamities that would befall vets, but we need to keep reminding those who make decisions to send other peoples sons and daughters to war of what the real cost may be.

Next time, on the 28th, I will post a few more interesting elements of this site. So, join me, as usual, at 9:00am.

To see other sites from Michigan, or any other state, click the state name on the left side of this page.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Massachusetts IV

On the one hand, Massachusetts is so replete with history that it is difficult to visit and not be distracted by so many sites and historical monuments, markers and places. But, on the other hand, there are quite a number of Vietnam memorials, too, so one could arguably spend all one's time doing only that.

I was walking across a street in San Antonia when I chanced to meet a guy, a fellow vet. We got talking and he told me that he was from Massachusetts. He told me all about a memorial he was involved with building in his hometown of Taunton. I told him I would try to get there, someday, to check it out.

Well, I finally did and it is every bit as great as he said it was.

It sits on Church Green which is near Union Street. The green was the sight of the first Meeting House in 1647 that was used for religious as well as civic meetings.

The simple stone with a plaque listing the names of the 13 lost is fronted by a fountain and pool. The fountain, he told me, is capable being controlled and is infused with lights so that water shows can be performed. I was not able to see that part, but was able to capture the fountain itself on my second visit to the site. It is really worth a visit and must be really beautiful when the fountain is all lit up and "dancing."

In reading up on the site, I saw that the fountain was dedicated in 1968 which makes it a very early memorial.

Many are remembered in paver bricks around the plaza.

These flags, shaped like a V were added after my first trip and were proudly on display the last time I visited.

Next on the agenda is a return to Michigan, so join me there on the 23 at 9:00am.

To see other memorials from Massachusetts, or any other state, click the state name on the left side of this page.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Maryland VI

Westminster has done a really great job with this memorial. I will post today about some of its other features, some of which are not so often seen.

The central stone with the names and likenesses is flanked on either side by "A day in the life" scenes. the first, shown next, is fairly standard and depicts the military aspect of our involvement.

The one on the right shows a less often displayed detail of what was going on. The humanitarian efforts we made are often lost to the conversation. I cannot think of another memorial that speaks to them so eloquently. Good job, Carroll County!

In addition to the above, this site boasts a contribution from the "Last Patrol." These guys were part of the education, public awareness and funds raising efforts to build the Maryland State Memorial in Baltimore. Here, they contributed the names of Maryland's lost to a time capsule in site. I read that
the names were hand rubbed at The Wall, in D.C.

The final shot is just of the four flags at the site. I particularly liked the way they looked in the wind, the day I was there.

Next time we will travel back to Massachusetts, so meet me there on the 18th, as always, at 9:00am.

If you would like to see more memorials from Maryland, or any other state, click the state name on the left side of this page.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Maryland V

Westminster, Maryland lies in Carroll County. A beautiful little town that boasts History, shopping and a an Irish pub! Not far from these lies an outstanding Vietnam memorial dedicated to the 19 from the area who were lost. Westminster is a town of fewer than 20,000 and is the County Seat.

The memorial has several interesting features and I expect it will take two separate posts to show them all to you.

The site consists of three panels, each addressing some specific aspect of the war. today I will concentrate upon the main panel which lists the names and likenesses of all 19 lost vets and is dedicated to those who loved them.

The central panel depicts a map of Vietnam overlying a map of Carroll County. It is enclosed by two other panels that I will address next time.

Each of the 19 heroes are remembered here, their likenesses forever present to remind all of the cost of war and the heroism of the few.

I have seen a few of these memorials that include these photo like images. They never fail to amaze me in that they are so lifelike.

Next time, on the 13th, I will post the remaining photos from this remarkable site. So, join me, as always, at 9:00am.

If you would see additional posts from Maryland, or any other state, simply click the state name on the left side of this page.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Maine VI

The town of Orono sits on a picturesque lake, or pond as they are called locally, in Maine. The place looks as if it could be used as a site for postcards, it is so beautiful. But, there on a little point, shaded by trees, over looking the pond, is a memorial to two of her sons.

What is most startling to me is that the one on the right could very easily be me. We look like twins. It is really quite disconcerting to look at a memorial and see your own face staring back at you.

This happenstance stuck with me and I did some research and found an actual picture of this man and in reality we don't look so much alike, but that etching is scary!

Mr. Nadeau in 1966
Me in 1967

 So, you tell me. Doppelganger? Another strange fact is that we were born just 12 days apart.

While looking into Mr Nadeau, I found a story about how his Purple Heart was lost and seemingly gone forever, but through some unlikely events was recovered. Read all about it here:

So, next time we will be in Maryland, so join me there, in The Free State, on July 8th, as always, At 9:00am.

To see other posts from Maine, or any other state, click on the state name on the left side of this page.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Louisiana IX

These are additional photos from the memorial in Avondale, Louisiana and a continuation of the previous post.

The memorial has lots of detail and I thought it would be interesting to include some of it for you to see.

The above pic depicts the ferrying of 1000 ARVN troops to a new location.

This pic names the operation "Chopper" and says that it took p;ace in 1962.

Some of the major battles are listed here, including a few of those not so often mentioned.

This field piece stands in what is called the Garden of Honor.

Once again, The Field Cross, but also with what to me is a more modern helmet. Does anyone know if these helmets were used in 'Nam? Did they come in after I was there, 1967- '68? I would love to know, because it just seems wrong, sloppy, to me if this is incorrect.

Next time, on July 3rd, we will visit Maine, so join me there at 9:00am.

To see additional sites from Louisiana, or any other state, click the name of the state on the left side of this page.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Louisiana VIII

I am always on the lookout for a memorial to become the "official" memorial of a state that does not have one. I have written before about the two memorials in New Orleans and several others throughout the state, but none of these are designated by Louisiana as the "Official" Vietnam memorial.

One of the criteria I use when trying to decide which memorials to include on these pages is; "Does it list names?" If a site lists all the names from a state, then that goes a long way towards my being comfortable calling it an "Official" memorial.

South of new Orleans, about 15 miles, is the Resthaven Park Cemetery and in 2012, just such a memorial was dedicated.

It names the 882 KIA and the 38 MIAs from Louisiana. So far, the only one I have found that does this. I have mentioned before that the one at the Super Dome has been reported to list names, but in my several visits to the site, I have never found them. Here, there are listed and a number of etched scenes that will be familiar to vets and others on either of the two upright stones that make up this memorial.

Called the Louisiana Vietnam Veterans Reflections Monument, it stands, slightly raised in the cemetery. This was a good thing the day I was there as most of the cemetery was under water, (Not uncommon in many places Louisiana, at times) In addition, there are several pieces of military equipment nearby, there, too are from 'Nam.

Located on Highway 90 in Avondale, the exact address is 3450, although it is easy to find once in the area. On 90, coming from N.O. it is on the right side of the road.

So, while this is not an "Official" memorial, it is the closest I have found.

Next time, I will share a few more photos from this site. Join me there on the 28th at 9:00am.

To see other memorials from Louisiana, or any other state, click the name of the state on the left side of this page.