Veterans Memorial anniversary worth marking

A UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY AWAITS Sheboygan County residents and visitors this weekend.

The Sheboygan County Veterans Memorial in Sheboygan’s Taylor Park is celebrating its 20th anniversary through Sunday and one of the highlights is a visit from The Healing Wall – the touring version of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.

The half-size replica of the memorial in Washington is making its only stop in Wisconsin this year in Sheboygan and provides a chance for those who can’t make it to the original in Washington to experience the impact of the memorial in person.

The visit is part of the weekend-long celebration of the Sheboygan County Veterans Memorial, which was originally dedicated Aug. 24, 1994.

The memorial originally included the names of 767 Sheboygan County residents who gave their lives in service to their country in six different wars. Among those were the names of 38 Sheboygan County residents who died in Vietnam – names that are among the more than 58,000 names on The Healing Wall and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

The trailer that brought The Healing Wall to Sheboygan County also serves as a mobile museum of the Vietnam War, telling the story of the Vietnam War, The Wall and the era surrounding the conflict - all designed to put American experiences in Vietnam in a historical and cultural context.

The weekend’s events will also include a Vietnam War-era American Huey 369 air ambulance helicopter on display Friday through Sunday, and a recognition ceremony Sunday at 1 p.m. at the memorial, 3091 Wilgus Ave. in Sheboygan.

The Sheboygan County Veterans Memorial is an impressive, inspiring and fitting memorial, one which gives due and proper recognition to those who served and sacrificed.

What it stands for, what it represents and what it recognizes should never be forgotten.

The center stone of the memorial is inscribed with a quotation from President Franklin D. Roosevelt: “Those who have long enjoyed such privileges as we enjoy forget in time that men have died to win them.”

That should not happen. Things like the Sheboygan County Veterans Memorial and The Healing Wall help ensure that it will not.

Take a little time this weekend to visit the memorial and the wall, to view the displays, and to pause and remember those honored there.

Then we can all help ensure that another quote, this one from President Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, which was included in the program for the original dedication ceremony in 1994, will live on and carry on: “…from these honored dead…we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain.”

At issue:
Wall that Heals
Bottom line:
Right to remember

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