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Contact: Lisa Gough
VVMF LAUNCHES NATIONAL MOVEMENT TO HONOR THE LOCAL HEROES WHO DIED DURING THE VIETNAM WAR
Visitors to The Wall That Heals Are Asked to Bring Photos to be Used in a New
Education Center Being Built in Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C. – The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) is asking visitors to The Wall That Heals to help gather photos of the more than 58,000 individuals whose names are inscribed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., said Jan Scruggs, VVMF founder and president. The photos will be used in the Education Center at The Wall, an underground learning facility being built on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
The Education Center will show the faces and tell the stories of those who served in Vietnam, as well as celebrate the values embodied by service members who have served in all of America’s wars. The images are being collected for a larger-than-life Wall of Faces that will show, on their birthdays, photos of those who died or remain missing from the Vietnam War.
Visitors to VVMF’s traveling replica, The Wall That Heals, will be able to contribute their photos onsite. The Wall That Heals is equipped with a scanner, so friends, family members and veterans do not have to part with their cherished photos, but can have them scanned while they wait. People contributing photos will also be encouraged to fill out a form that will allow them to provide more information on the person whose photo they are contributing, as well as offer a remembrance of that person.
Visitors who want to contribute photos later may do so by visiting www.buildthecenter.org and uploading the photo and submission form from their home computers.
All photos and remembrances contributed in this grassroots collection effort will be shared on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund website, www.vvmf.org, where a Virtual Wall allows visitors to search for the names of loved ones lost during the war, find information on them, post photos and share remembrances. When the Education Center at The Wall is built, these photos and remembrances will be used to tell the stories of the more than 58,000 Americans who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country, reminding all visitors of the true cost of war and of the dreams that remain unfulfilled because of lives cut tragically short in Vietnam.
“The Education Center is a natural outgrowth of the goals VVMF had when we built The Wall in 1982,” said Scruggs, who is leading the national effort to build the Education Center. “Back then, we wanted to remember their names. Now, we also want to remember their faces and learn the stories of the remarkable men and women who died serving their country.”
The Education Center at The Wall will be built in Washington, D.C., near the Vietnam and Lincoln Memorials. In addition to the Wall of Faces, the Education Center will showcase some of the more than 150,000 items that have been left at The Wall in tribute since 1982, and it will provide special exhibits to highlight the service and sacrifices of different groups and individuals. There will also be displays about the history of the Vietnam War and The Wall.
Gen. Colin L. Powell, USA (Ret.), is the honorary chairman of the campaign to build the Education Center at The Wall. Approximately $85 million will be needed to build the Center. VVMF has received donations from corporations, organizations, veterans groups and individuals, including the lead gift from Time Warner. Anyone interested in learning more about the Education Center or making a contribution can visit www.buildthecenter.org or call 1-866-990-WALL.
Established in 1979, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund is dedicated to preserving the legacy of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., promoting healing and educating about the impact of the Vietnam War. Authorized by Congress, its most recent initiative is building The Education Center at The Wall, an underground facility near the Memorial that is designed to help visitors see the faces and discover the stories of those named on The Wall. Other Memorial Fund initiatives include educational programs for students and teachers, a traveling Wall replica that honors our nation's veterans and six ceremonies each year at The Wall to honor and remember those who served in Vietnam.