National Vietnam Veterans Day: 5 Things To Never Forget

National Vietnam Veterans Day: 5 Things To Never Forget | World War Wings Videos

Cherie A. Thurlby / Public Domain

March 29th

How many Americans know that March 29 is National Vietnam Veterans Day? Not many.

It may be because it wasn’t declared a day of remembrance until 2012 when Barack Obama proclaimed it for “all Americans to observe this day with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities…”

Then, on March 28, 2017, President Donald Trump signed the Vietnam War Veterans Recognition Act of 2017. This act officially recognized March 29 as National Vietnam War Veterans Day.

Here’s 5 things to remember as we celebrate and thank our veterans:

5. National Vietnam War Veterans Day Marks The Anniversary Of The U.S. Withdrawal

Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke participates in a wreath laying ceremony at the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C., March 29, 2018. President Donald Trump recently signed into law The Vietnam War Veterans Recognition Act of 2017. | U.S Department of Homeland Security / Public Domain

The Vietnam War was brutal and long. It officially began in November 1955 and ended April 30, 1975, for a total of 19 years, 4 weeks and 1 day. The United States pulled out of the conflict on March 29, 1973.

4. Remembering Those Who Were Lost

Part of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington D.C. | Nancymaness / Public Domain

The war took the lives of more than 58,000 U.S. troops and wounded at least another 150,000. 60% of those who perished were 21 years old or younger.

3. Surviving Veterans

Photograph of Private First Class Russell R. Widdifield in Vietnam, 1969 | U.S. Archive / Public Domain

The Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that there are 6.4 million living Vietnam veterans and 9 million families of those who served during 1955 – 1975

2. The Vietnam Memorial Wall

Veterans and their family members visit the Vietnam War Memorial on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2006. | Cherie A. Thurlby / Public Domain

There are many ways to repay your respects to veterans, like thanking them in person and listening to their stories. But a visit to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. is also a powerful experience, both for civilians and veterans. The memorial consists of  three parts – the wall itself, “The Three Soldiers,” and the Vietnam Women’s Memorial.

Those wishing for a memento from the wall when they visit, particularly for a family member, will put a piece of paper over a name and rub it with crayon or pencil. They can then take the name home with them.

1. These Veterans Deserve All Of Our Thanks

Captain Jack Scorby Jr., commanding officer of Naval Air Station Jacksonville, thanks Vietnam veteran Keith Helton for his service during the Vietnam War Commemoration Ceremony in 2007. | U.S. Navy photo by Kaylee LaRocque / Public Domain
  • To thank and honor Vietnam veterans and their families for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the Nation.
  • Highlight the service of our Armed Forces and support organizations during the war
  • Pay tribute to wartime contributions at home by American citizens
  • Highlight technology, science and medical advances made during the war
  • Recognize contributions by U.S. Allies

How do you pay your respects to our veterans?

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