Thousands gather to read the names on The Wall

Washington, D.C.For nearly a century, November 11 has been a day to honor veterans. In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed the day the first observance of what was then Armistice Day. He had this to say: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of nations.”

This November, we will gather at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to read all 58,282 names etched in the granite. This will be only the 5th time this has been done. The reading will begin Nov. 7 and last the four days leading up to Veterans Day. 

More than 2,000 friends, family, celebrities, politicians and strangers alike will come to The Wall from all around the country to honor those they knew, those they loved, and in many cases, those they never met.

November marks the 30th anniversary of The Wall and the 50th commemoration of the Vietnam War at The Wall on Memorial Day by the Department of Defense. Nov 28, 2012 will be the ceremonial groundbreaking for the Education Center at The Wall, a place on our National Mall where our military heroes' stories and sacrifice will never be forgotten.

We are losing Vietnam veterans at an alarmingly fast rate. Each day we lose about 390 to illness and age. Their stories are in danger of being lost forever if we don’t take action now to ensure they become a part of our collective national memory. Millions visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial each year. Tens of thousands gave their lives during the many years of conflict and their names are etched into the black granite. But they are more than names and we must do our part to remember them.

About VVMF and the Education Center at The Wall

The Education Center at The Wall is a place on our National Mall where our military heroes' stories and sacrifice will never be forgotten. The Education Center at The Wall is a multi-million dollar, state-of-the-art visitor’s center and learning facility to be built on the grounds of the Vietnam Veterans and the Lincoln Memorials. Visitors will better understand the profound impact the Vietnam War had on their hometowns and the nation. The Education Center will feature the faces and stories of the 58,282 men and women on The Wall, honoring those who fell in Vietnam, those who fought and returned, as well as the friends and families of all who served.

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.

Support the Education Center at The Wall by visiting www.buildthecenter.orgor by calling 866-990-WALL.

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