Ceremony on Mother's Day Will Honor Seven Name Additions, Five Status Changes

Seven names to be added to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Ceremony on Mother’s Day will honor name additions and status changes

Washington, D.C. The names of seven American service members will be engraved on the black granite walls of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and the status designations will be changed for five others whose names are already on The Wall. These changes will bring the total number of names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to 58,307 men and women who were killed or who remain missing in action.

On Sunday, May 10 at 10 a.m., VVMF will host the annual Name Additions Ceremony, during which the changes will be commemorated. Each spring, VVMF works with the Department of Defense to make sure The Wall is accurate. Names are added for those service members who have met the Department of Defense criteria for addition to The Wall, having sustained wounds in Vietnam from which they eventually perished. Those service members who in the last year were returned or accounted for will have their statuses changed from MIA to KIA.

Weather permitting, work to inscribe the names and change designations will be complete this week. When names are added, the highly technical procedure requires meticulous work to match the stroke and depth of the surrounding names to within 1/1,000 of an inch. The physical work of adding the names and changing designations will be performed by James Lee of the Colorado-based company, Engrave Write.

The Department of Defense sets the criteria for and makes decisions about whose names are eligible for inscription on The Wall. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund pays for the name additions and status changes, and works with the National Park Service to ensure long-term preservation and maintenance of The Wall.

These seven service members will join 58,300 others who lost their lives or remain missing in action as a result of combat in Vietnam:

Francis G. Corcoran

MSG, U.S. Army

Philadelphia, Penn.

Nov. 15, 1928 – Dec. 09, 1967


Michael P. Knight

CPT, U.S. Army

Thomasville, Ga.

Feb. 28, 1944 – Nov. 23, 1969


Gannon C. Milby Jr.

SSG, U.S. Army

Easton, Md.

March 20, 1947 – June 10, 1968


Charley V. Stanley

SGT, U.S. Army

Houston, Texas

April 06, 1927 – July 07, 1968


Stanley M. Staszak

MAJ, U.S. Army

Maplewood, N.J.

March 06, 1920, – April 04, 1959


Clarence Turpin

SFC, U.S. Army

Baltimore, Md.

June 15, 1931 – Nov. 23, 1968


George L. Wilson

MSG, U.S. Army

Philadelphia, Penn.

Aug. 24, 1924 – Nov. 08, 1967

Beside each name on the memorial is a symbol designating status. The diamond symbol denotes confirmed death. The cross represents missing in action. When a service member’s remains are returned or accounted for, the diamond is superimposed over the cross.

These five service members will have their status changed from MIA to KIA:

• William E. Cooper; COL, USAF; Albany, Ga.; Panel 6E, Row 131

• Douglas D. Ferguson; CAPT, USAF; Tacoma, Wash.; Panel 15W, Row 110

• Melvin W. Finch; CAPT, USA; Fort Belvoir, Va..; Panel 2W, Row 125

• Francis J. McGouldrick Jr.; COL, USAF; New Haven, Conn.; Panel 36W, Row 17

• James L. Vanbendegom; SSG, USA; Kenosha, Wis.; Panel 23E, Row 65

About VVMF and the Education Center at The Wall

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) is the nonprofit organization that built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (The Wall) in Washington, D.C. in 1982. VVMF is dedicated to preserving the legacy of The Wall, promoting healing and educating future generations about the impact of the Vietnam War through programs, ceremonies and education.

Three decades later, the mission continues as VVMF raises funds to build the Education Center at The Wall. The Center will be an interactive learning facility on the National Mall where our military heroes' stories and sacrifice will never be forgotten. The Education Center will feature the faces and stories of the more than 58,000 men and women on The Wall and honor America's Legacy of Service, including those serving in our nation's Armed Forces today. Time Warner is the Lead Gift Benefactor in the campaign to build the Education Center at The Wall. To learn more about VVMF and the Education Center at The Wall, visit www.vvmf.org or call 866-990-WALL.


You can read more about this year's name additions and status changes on the VVMF blog.