Vietnam Women's Memorial Celebrates 10th Anniversary






  
 

Vietnam Women's Memorial Celebrates 10th Anniversary Thousands Expected for Four-Day Veterans Day Weekend Celebration Washington, D.C., This Veteran's Day, Nov. 11, 2003, marks the 10th anniversary of the historic dedication of the Vietnam Women's Memorial on the Mall in Washington, D.C. The Vietnam Women’s Memorial Foundation, Inc., (formerly “Project”) will commemorate the day with a host of events for women and men veterans of the Vietnam era, their families, friends and the general public. According to Vietnam Women’s Memorial Foundation (VWMF) Founder and President, Diane Carlson Evans, R.N., thousands of women veterans are expected in Washington, D.C., to join in the four-day Veterans Day weekend celebration Nov. 8-11. The anniversary provides an opportunity for women veterans to continue to reflect on what was for many, one of the most pivotal experiences of their lives. Over 265,000 military women served America all over the world during the Vietnam era. Approximately 11,000 military women were stationed in Vietnam during the war. Ninety percent of them were nurses—the youngest and most inexperienced group of American medical personnel ever to serve in wartime. All were volunteers. In addition to the military women, an unknown number of civilian women also volunteered to serve in Vietnam as news correspondents and workers for the Red Cross, the USO, Special Services, the American Friends Service Committee, Catholic Relief Services and other humanitarian organizations. The memorial honors every woman who served during that time. “Through the years, I have found that when people are educated about the voluntary presence of young American women during the Vietnam War, it deepens their perspective on that era,” says Evans, who served in-country as an Army nurse from 1968-9. “The statue of women at the Vietnam Memorial site shows the human face of love and care that did indeed exist even in the midst of great trauma and suffering.” On Veterans’ Day 1993, the dedication of the Vietnam Women’s Memorial opened the hearts and collective understanding of millions of Americans and people around the world. Many women veterans had never told their friends, colleagues or even loved ones about their tour of duty in Vietnam. The presence of the memorial on the National Mall has helped many of these women to encounter, reexamine and become more peaceful about this part of their lives. Thousands visit Santa Fe sculptor Glenna Goodacre’s heroic-size bronze monument every year and are inspired by its legacy of healing and hope not only for the nation, and for them personally, as well. The work of the Vietnam Women’s Memorial Foundation continues to educate America about the presence of women in America’s Vietnam era story. Over the years, the VWMF has responded to hundreds of requests from students, faculty, authors, artists, filmmakers and the media. The VWMF also facilitates research concerning women who served, participates in educational programs, and provides consultation on projects and papers. The VWMF’s 10th Anniversary Celebration will feature a Candlelight Ceremony at 6:00 p.m. (EST), Nov. 10 at the Vietnam Women’s Memorial followed by a Native American Round Dance. Later that evening, veterans will gather for “A Rock & Roll Reunion” at the DMZ to Delta Dance 8 p.m. to Midnight, at the Holiday Inn Roslyn across the Key Bridge in Virginia. On Veterans’ Day, at 7:30 – 8:00 a.m., the names of the women who died in Vietnam and since the end of the war will be read at the Vietnam Women’s Memorial. The stories of Vietnam veterans who are represented in the Vietnam Women’s Memorial, will come to life when “in their own voices” as these men and women express their feelings and experiences through poetry, song and speeches at the women’s statue throughout the day. At 1:00 p.m., in conjunction with the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund and the National Park Service, Diane Carlson Evans, R.N., will introduce special guest speakers and performing artists who will pay tribute to women veterans during the Veteran’s Day ceremony at the Wall. For a complete schedule of Anniversary events hosted by the Vietnam Women’s Memorial Foundation and other veterans’ organizations, and for additional information about the VWMF, please visit their web site at http://www.vietnamwomensmemorial.org

 
 

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