Every year on Memorial Day, thousands congregate to The Wall to pay their respects and to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. On this special day, prominent Americans from all walks of life came to the Memorial to deliver thoughtful and patriotic speeches.
This year, CNN’s Jake Tapper was our emcee and Mike J. Rogers was our keynote speaker. Other speakers included adamant VVMF volunteer Janna Hoehn of Hawaii. Janna spoke about her unyielding journey as a volunteer for our Faces Never Forgotten program, helping collect photos for fallen Vietnam servicemen. And Gold Star Mother Ann Wolcott, mother of Rex M. Sherman, discussed the challenges of losing her son to war and her journey to healing. And for the first time, VVMF invited the winner of its first-ever student video contest to participate in its Memorial Day Observance. Before Memorial Day, VVMF asked students in grades 4-12 to submit a video that answered the following question, “What does Memorial Day mean to me?” Videos had to be 5 minutes or less in length, were judged by a panel of Vietnam content experts and the winning video was chosen by our social media audiences. The winner was 11th grader Bianca Olivieri. You can watch her video here.
Watch the highlights from this year's Memorial Day Observance at The Wall below.