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Traveling Wall Memorial
Posted By: xfraser, 09-30-2006, 09:08 PM

This weekend the traveling Vietnam Memorial Wall was in Barberton, Ohio, and we stopped by after work to see it. I was taken by surprise at the raw emotion it invoked, I can't even imagine what the one in DC is like. I thought I'd post a some of the pictures I took.

Even thought it is not full size, it is still very expansive:



This is a National Guardsman getting a rubbing of one of the names for some people:



Here's one of the many flowers that were left by the wall:



This guy really got to me, he seemed to know quite a few names on the wall, and he went and polished each one:


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10-01-2006, 05:40 AM   #2
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Thank You Carol for this post.

I would like to try and explain the emotion that this Memorial envokes.

For those of us who were there, (me for one) ( Date of service Sep 24th 1969- Sep 28th 1975) this Wall is more than a memorial. It is a way to get in touch with Friends and buddies. The last picture you show (The guy polishing names) He's not just polishing the names, he is remembering each one of those names with reverence. These names are our friends who gave their lives in a supreme sacrifice, Not to their country but to their buddies and friends.

They didn't do it for medals, or for their loved ones at home. They didn't even do it, in most cases knowing that they would no longer be alive.
We were there at the command of the government and it's people.

All who died there, died in the arms of their friends and guys who were going thru the same horrors as they were. Those of us who made it back to the world, remember each and every one of those names. We remember the exact time, and situation in which they were taken. We remember the pain we shared and the suffering we all went thru.

And many, like me still ask to this day why I was spared? This is life, and with this memorial, and the one in DC their lives go on in the rememberance of those who were there, and those who knew, and those of us who will always remember the reason why. Families remember their loved ones, and the way they were. The vetrens remember the brotherhood and the bonds of war.

To all my fellow Vetrens, I say thank You for remembering, Thank you for the brotherhood, and Thank you for being there to help and hold on to. You will always be in my heart and mind. I WILL NEVER FORGET.

Good shooting.
Cheers: David
10-01-2006, 06:29 AM   #3
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David,
There are no words even remotely adequate to convey what I want to express, so I'll just say thank-you and hope you know everything I mean by that.
10-01-2006, 07:59 AM   #4
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Carol and David

Thank YOU David! That was VERY touching and insightful explanation. It evoked the same visceral emotional response I had to seeing the wall for the first time.

Carol, I don't know if the traveling wall is built the same as the one in DC, but the one in DC tapers down to just one name. Then in the middle it's gigantic. (These were taken with a Sony F717.)






I'm an emotional sap to the extreme, but this one monument does to me what no other in DC can do.

10-01-2006, 08:20 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by xfraser Quote
David,
There are no words even remotely adequate to convey what I want to express, so I'll just say thank-you and hope you know everything I mean by that.
Carol, Thank You for careing, and remembering.

Good Shooting.
Cheers: David.
10-01-2006, 08:55 AM   #6
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Traveling Wall

Thank you Tracy,
The very first time I travled to DC. just to see this memorial, I didn't know what to expect or how I would feel upon seeing it for the first time. I can honestly say this though, I was very glad my wife was there. She held me for hours as I cried like a baby. All the pent up feelings, I had inside for 15 years spilled out in tears.

I realize now there was a lot of remorse, for not only the friends I lost but for the loss of my childhood. I was 17 when I did my first 18mo. tour. In the first 2 weeks I went from a wide eyed inmature kid, to a man that had aready seen his share of death, and distruction. In the first three days in country I lost 6 of the 30 people I went thru basic and AIT with. I watched, totaly unprepaird for what would happen over a course of the next 5 years.

I realised then If I made it back home, my life, and soul would be for ever changed. I was not prepaired to deal with the experience nor would anyone be, in a situation such as War.

My heart, and love, and understanding go out to those who now serve and fight, and die for this government. (I'm sorry, so very sorry, to say I am not against defending my country, but I will never again fight for this or any other government) I love my country and it's people but I dispise the way this government throws away the young lives of totaly unprepaird men and women to say we are fighting a war on terror. We are, but I feel the terror was brought upon us by this government, and their interferience, and forgin policies.(just my opinion here).

Any way I guess I got carried away here, and I don't blame anyone for feeling diffrent. This is a photography forum, and Adam If you would want to delete this part of the thread I wont be hurt or blame you for it. So no more from me here I promise.

Thank all who responded to my feelings. My heart and my soul reflects the feelings of the beauty I photograph.

Good Shooting.
Cheers: David
10-01-2006, 10:10 AM   #7
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The Wall

I served from 1962 - 1964 and did not go to Viet-Nam. However, when I visited the travling wall at Ft. Stewart, GA several years ago, I was overcome with an emotion that I could not explain. From my High Scholl graduating class (1962), we lost only one in Viet-Nam. Some of the classes behind us lost several.

When I went to see the wall, it was more out of curiousity than it was a need to connect with those who had served. When I left that day, I felt an emptiness, a feeling of great loss and a tremedous feeling of guilt that I had not been among those who served. Today, I live in Savannah, GA which is home to Hunter Army Airfield and about 30 miles from Ft. Stewart. Hunter is a point of debarkation for those going to Iraq. I see the wives and families of those serving every day and I offer them what I can in the way of support. Financial support, Emotional support or sometimes just someone to listen. For those who have returned, I offer the same.

As a former soldier, I know the debt that is owed and know that I will only ever be able to pay a small portion of what is owed.
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