Monday, August 20, 2012


This beautiful memorial, the second of two, sits on the Capitol grounds in Olympia. The original marker which was not well received by surviving vets became the impetus to create this new one.

Dedicated in 1987, it sits on a 45 foot base which is designed so that anyone, a vet, a child, someone in a wheelchair, can touch the 1116 names inscribed and honored here, forever.

Purposely placed on a grassy knoll, under this magnificent tree it offers a place of quite peace and solitude for any that visit. The rolling design of the top represents the ups and downs of everyday life until it reaches the split caused by the war. The split represents the break in the cycle of life caused by war.

The names are listed in chronological order of loss from July 1963 to May 1975. A small cross denotes those still MIA. As at many sites, mementos and keepsakes are left by visitors and mourners. these are all collected and kept in the state archives.

Another interesting point is that the state of Washington provided some funding for the project, but the fundraising activity of the planners was so successful, raising the money from 1466 private donors that the state money was returned. Most of the donors contributed less than 25 dollars. So, this one, too was built by the people.

I had an opportunity to speak with a number of folks in the Capitol building and the Park Service representative, on site, and all were enthusiastic and helpful and I thank them.

The last picture in this series is of the view from near the site. I just think it is too beautiful not to include.

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