BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. – The Wall That Heals, the traveling half-scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., will be in Pink Hill Park, 2715 Park Road, Blue Springs, Mo., from September 30 – October 3.
The Wall That Heals event will begin with an opening ceremony at 6:55 a.m. on September 28 and will be open 24 hours a day until 6 p.m. on October 3. This event is free and open to the public.
Jan Scruggs will be a featured speaker at Thursday’s reflection ceremony beginning at 6:30 p.m. In 1976, Scruggs conceived the idea of building the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., as a tribute to all who served during the longest war in American History. Scruggs was wounded and decorated for his service in the Vietnam War as part of the 199th Light Infantry Brigade of the U.S. Army.
The exhibition will feature the dramatic replica – stretching nearly 250 feet in total length – as well as an Information Center and traveling museum displaying memorabilia left at The Wall in Washington, D.C. Special activities planned include daily awakening and reflection ceremonies and military flyovers on Saturday and Sunday. The Sunday’s closing ceremony will feature a reading of each of the 199 names of the service members from Jackson County, Missouri listed on The Wall.
“We invite all Vietnam War veterans to come see The Wall That Heals in Blue Springs, and all parents and children to participate in the events to learn about this important time in America’s history,” said Blue Springs Mayor Carson Ross. “This event is near and dear to my heart, I served in Vietnam as a US Army Combat Infantryman from 1967-68.”
The City of Blue Springs, Blue Springs Public Art Commission, Blue Springs School District and area businesses and veterans’ organizations have formed a partnership to bring the traveling exhibition of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall to Blue Springs.
“This famous Vietnam memorial has inspired and healed many people. But not everyone can get to Washington, D.C. to see it. So, we’ve worked for many years to bring it here,” says Eleanor Frasier, chairman of the Public Art Commission. “We wanted to give the Vietnam Veterans the homecoming they deserve.”
The Wall That Heals exhibition is organized by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, the organization charged with preserving The Wall in Washington, D.C., and its vast legacy. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., has the names of the more than 58,000 soldiers who were killed or missing in the war.
National sponsors of the tour include Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Charitable Trust, Federal Express, Geico, New Century Transportation, Harley-Davidson Foundation and Target Corporation. Local sponsors Local sponsors include ATK, Hy-Vee, KFKF-FM and The Examiner.
For more information on The Wall That Heals, contact Kim Nakahodo, Communications Manager at (816) 655-0497, visit the Web site, www.bluespringswallthatheals.net or Wall That Heals Blue Springs on Facebook.