Vietnam War Commemoration Announcement

Army Launches 50th Anniversary Commemoration of Vietnam War

By J.D. Leipold, Army News Service

WASHINGTON, Aug. 30, 2013 – The afternoon in the Pentagon auditorium on Aug. 28 was a time for reflection on a war that spanned 10 years and cost the country the lives of more than 58,000 young men and women. It was also an occasion to honor and thank nine Vietnam War veterans who’d served a total of 14 tours in-country and 225 years in uniform.

Click photo for screen-resolution image
Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. John F. Campbell praises nine Vietnam War veterans for their service, Aug. 28, 2013, at the Pentagon’s kick-off of the 50th Anniversary Commemoration of the Vietnam War, which spanned from 1965 to 1975. U.S. Army photo by J.D. Leipold
  

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

Kicking off the Pentagon’s first event commemorating the 50th anniversary of the conflict, Army Lt. Gen. Raymond V. Mason, deputy chief of staff for logistics, opened the ceremony recalling personal memories as well as his broader experiences as a young American citizen.

“I was a young Army brat and it was difficult for me to watch my dad come back after his third tour in Vietnam and not get treated appropriately, at least in my mind,” Mason said. “I was just a pretty young guy at that time, but I could feel that it wasn’t right. It struck me, and I knew if I ever had the opportunity to make that right I would do the best I could.

“Today, we are recognizing nine of our patriots and their families who stood up to the test of their generation and their decade,” he continued. “I think it’s well overdue. Nothing is more important than pausing and reflecting on the sacrifices of what these great men and women did and those who gave their last full measure.”

On March 8, 1965, America’s ground war in Vietnam began when 3,500 Marines were deployed with the American public’s support. By Christmas, nearly 200,000 soldiers, Marines, airmen and sailors were in the country. At war’s end on April 30, 1975, nearly 3 million Americans had been on the ground, in the air and on rivers of Vietnam. More than 58,000 Americans lost their lives.

While the official 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War will be in 2015, the president and Congress requested the secretary of Defense to begin planning the Vietnam War commemoration in 2007.

The goal is to get more than 10,000 corporations, civic groups as well as government and community organizations to join as partners and help sponsor hometown events to honor Vietnam veterans, their families and those who were prisoners of war and missing in action.

To date, 4,921 commemorative partners have signed on, including Army logistics, or G-4, which became the first.

Following Mason’s remarks, Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. John F. Campbell thanked him and his team for leading the way to celebrate the contributions of Vietnam veterans.

The son of an Air Force senior master sergeant, Campbell told of his years growing up on military bases around the world before attending West Point, and then recalled his first interaction with Vietnam veterans while a lieutenant in Germany.

“Both the battalion commanders were Vietnam veterans … all the platoon sergeants, all the first sergeants, all the company commanders were Vietnam veterans,” Campbell said. The vets, he said, instilled in him their hard-fought lessons-learned from Vietnam and wanted to make sure the young lieutenants and soldiers wouldn’t make the same mistakes they had.

Retired Army Lt. Gen. Claude “Mick” Kicklighter serves as director of the U.S. Vietnam War Commemoration. During the Pentagon event he previewed the timeline of plans for honoring Vietnam veterans across the country over the next few years.

“Veterans of Valor,” a 30-minute documentary with the nine honorees recalling humorous and somber anecdotes of their war experiences and interspersed with still photographs of themselves in Vietnam was also premiered.

RELEASE No. 037-11

January 14, 2011

DOD Announces Vietnam War 50th Anniversary Commemoration Program

The Department of Defense announced today its program to
commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War. The program will:

- Thank and honor veterans of the Vietnam War, including personnel who were held as prisoners of war or listed as missing in action,for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States and to thank and honor the families of these veterans.

- Highlight the service of the armed forces during the Vietnam War and the contributions of federal agencies and governmental and non-governmental organizations that served with, or in support of, the armed forces.

- Pay tribute to the contributions made on the home front by the people of the United States during the Vietnam War.

- Highlight the advances in technology, science, and medicine related to the military research conducted during the Vietnam War.

- Recognize the contributions and sacrifices made by the allies of the United States during the Vietnam War.

DoD representatives will coordinate with other federal agencies, veteran groups, state, local government and non-government organizations for their input in Vietnam War commemoration activities. For more information call 877-387-9951 or visit the official website at http://www.vietnamwar50th.com/.

U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)

More news:

Department Begins Project for Vietnam War Veterans
Wed, 19 Jan 2011 16:55:00 -0600

Department Begins Project for Vietnam War Veterans

By Terri Moon Cronk
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Jan. 19, 2011 – More than three decades after the war’s end, the Defense Department has begun a project to pay tribute to the nation’s Vietnam War veterans.

The 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration was spawned from the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act.

“It was a very important time period for veterans, because most Vietnam veterans as a whole never received the homecoming that our troops receive now,” said Army Lt. Col. Hunter Holliday, public affairs officer for the
commemoration.

At the center of the project is a website, “50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration,” at http://www.vietnamwar50th.com, which will serve as a clearinghouse for information on the war once it is fully functional, a milestone expected this spring.

Information gleaned from the website is expected to be used for myriad purposes, such as to chronicle facts, provide educational materials, and offer resources for a commemorative partners program, Holliday said.

The partners program will comprise guidance and materials for agencies, veterans groups, local government and nongovernment organizations to conduct their own Vietnam War commemoration activities.

The website is expected to play a major role in the campaign, said Jeff Wilson, who handles marketing for the project, noting it will be highly interactive and will include content on historical events, a timeline, photos, documents, video and audio. A calendar will list major Defense-sponsored events.

The website offers a prelude of activities and ceremonies to:

– Honor Vietnam War veterans and their families — including prisoners of war and those listed as missing in action — for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States.

– Highlight Armed Forces service during the Vietnam War, in addition to contributions made by government and private organizations.

– Pay tribute to the contributions made on the home front by U.S. citizens.

– Highlight the advances in technology, science and medicine in military research made during the war.

– Recognize contributions and sacrifices made by U.S. allies during the war.

“Hopefully [the commemoration] will be a healing process for the veterans who were never recognized properly when they came home,” Holliday said, noting the volatile political landscape that surrounded the war.

Related Sites:
50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War Commemoration <http://www.vietnamwar50th.com>

**********************************

IMMEDIATE RELEASE No. 400-12

May 18, 2012

DOD to Host Vietnam War Commemoration Ceremony at Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta will host a ceremony on Monday, May 28, 2012, at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., to thank and honor America’s Vietnam Veterans on behalf of a grateful nation.  This ceremony will serve as a public kickoff of efforts to partner with communities across the United States.  Invited guests include thousands of Vietnam Veterans, their loved ones, Gold Star families and leadership from the military services, Cabinet and Congress.  There will be a limited viewing area open to the general public.

The Memorial Day ceremony marks the beginning of the national commemoration of the Vietnam War’s 50th anniversary program and is a joint effort between the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, the National Park Service and the Department of Defense.  The event will include remarks, a moment of silence, music and ceremonial elements that will begin at 1 p.m. EDT.  The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, Secretary of Defense and Senator Chuck Hagel, a Vietnam Veteran, and other dignitaries are scheduled to speak.

Due to space limitations, the event is open to a limited number of registered correspondents with pooled TV and still photographers.  Correspondents wanting to cover this event must RSVP by email to PA_vnwar50th@wso.whs.mil by noon Wednesday, May 23 to receive set instructions.  Registration will be confirmed by e-mail and badges will be issued at the media check-in desk on Monday, May 28, 2012 at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

The DoD Vietnam 50th Anniversary Commemoration Program will partner with other federal agencies, veterans groups, state, local government and non-government organizations to:

*     Thank and honor veterans of the Vietnam War, including personnel who were held as prisoners of war or listed as missing in action, for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States and to thank and honor the families of these veterans.

*     Highlight the service of the armed forces during the Vietnam War and the contributions of federal agencies and governmental and non-governmental organizations that served with, or in support of, the armed forces.

*     Pay tribute to the contributions made on the home front by the people of the United States during the Vietnam War.

*     Highlight the advances in technology, science, and medicine related to the military research conducted during the Vietnam War.

*     Recognize the contributions and sacrifices made by the allies of the United States during the Vietnam War.

For more information on the Vietnam War Commemoration, please call 877-387-9951 or visit the official website at http://www.vietnamwar50th.com.

About RetiredMSG

Master Sergeant (E-8), US Army (Retired) (10/01/1990) MOS 98Z50, 98C source MOS Ft. Dix, NJ; Ft. Devens, MA; 8th RRFS Phu Bai, RVN; 407th RRD Quang Tri, RVN; 313th ASA Bn, Ft. Bragg, NC; Defense Language Institute-East Coast, Anacostia, MD; 1st USASAFS Vint Hill Farms Station, Warrenton, VA; Consolidated Security Operations Center, San Antonio, TX; HQ USASA Arlington Hall Station, Arlington, VA; Advanced Non-Commissioned Officers Education School, Ft. Devens, MA; 330th EW Avn Co (Fwd), Kaiserslautern/Gruenstadt, GE; HQ USAINSCOM Arlington Hall Station, Arlington, VA; 370th EW Co (HF DF Rear), Vint Hill Farms Station, Warrenton, VA; AFCENT Reserve Corps (Fwd), Maastricht, NL; HQ USAINSCOM Arlington Hall Station, Arlington, VA; HQ USAINSCOM Nolan Building, Ft. Belvoir, VA DoD Civilian (Retired) (12/31/2013) HQ USAINSCOM; HQ DA DCS, G-2; OUSD(I) and USF-I ITAM-I
This entry was posted in General Comments. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Vietnam War Commemoration Announcement

  1. Sgt. Cox says:

    I just checked the website for it, and while saying a lot, it actually told very little information about who was going to be the MC, speakers, appx length of the program, or really anything else other than just the BROAD scope of it. I should not have been surprised, it is DOD setting it up and they probably don’t even know, themselves.
    Sgt. Cox

    • RetiredMSG says:

      Thanks for your comment Sgt. Cox, I too was disappointed in the depth of information on the web site. I’m going to try and track down the office at OSD responsible for the program.

  2. Bobby Dias says:

    You are much out of reality- President Harry Truman sent US soldiers into Vietnam while he was in office. Get your facts straight so that ALL those that fought and/or died in Vietnam are remembered, not only those that selfish YOU want to be honored.

    • RetiredMSG says:

      Thanks for commenting on the Guestbook site, Bobby. I think, however, you may have commented on something you read somewhere else at some other time. The page you commented on was a Press Release, not something I wrote, and it did not specify dates of service in Vietnam. The way I understand the intent of the program, all those who fought and/or died in Vietnam are being honored, regardless of which President was in office during their period of Vietnam service.

    • RetiredMSG says:

      Bobby, in case you’re still checking responses, I noted the following on the “Interactive Timeline” of the Vietnam War 50th web site:

      MAY 16, 1945
      Office of Strategic Services (OSS) Deer Team under MAJ Archimedes Patti arrived in Indochina to assist Viet Minh guerrillas against Japanese

      SEPTEMBER 26, 1945
      Mistaken for a Frenchman, LTC A. Peter Dewey was shot by Viet Minh troops as he was driving a jeep to the Saigon airport. Dewey was involved in Operation EMBANKMENT that focused on the recovery of WWII POWs in Vietnam.

      JUNE 27, 1950
      President Truman announced an increase in military aid to pro-French forces of the Bao Dai regime. In July, the United States committed fifteen million dollars in military aid to the French for the war in Indochina. American military advisers were to accompany the flow of U.S. tanks, planes, artillery, and other supplies. Over the next four years, the United States would spend three billion dollars on the French war and by 1954 provided 80 percent of all war supplies used by the French.

      AUGUST 3, 1950
      The first elements of the 35 man group arrived in Saigon. Brigadier General Francis G. Brink, U.S.Army, assumed command as the first Chief of MAAG on 10 October. The mission of the MAAG was limited to provision of material assistance to the French forces and indirect provision of military aid to the forces of the Associated States.

      JUNE 1, 1954
      From 1954 to 1957, Lansdale was stationed in Saigon where he was the head of the (SMM). During this period he was active in training the Vietnamese National Army (VNA) and in conducting a propaganda campaign spreading claims that North Vietnamese agents were making attacks in South Vietnam.

      Lots more there if you look.

    • Sgt. Cox says:

      Bobby, why are you so angry? There is no need for such remarks, but if you really feel the need to express them, at least direct them toward the right people. The DOD has set this up and THEY are the ones (as well as the VA) decided the “dates of the start and finish of the Vietnam War … not the web master of this site.

  3. J.R.Frankenburger says:

    What are the commemorative events planned ?

    • RetiredMSG says:

      I asked myself that question after reading the press release … you may want to check the web page listed in the article every once in a while to see what all will be going on. Thanks,

      – duane

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s