The Vietnam Wall is approximately 493.5 feet long, spanning the western side of the National Mall in Washington, D.C. It contains the names of over 58,000 American soldiers who were killed or went missing in the Vietnam War.
The Vietnam Wall, also known as the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, is a symbol that stands as a poignant reminder of the immense sacrifices made during the Vietnam War. Stretching approximately 493.5 feet in length, the Wall is situated on the western side of the National Mall in Washington, D.C. It holds deep significance for many, as it commemorates the lives of over 58,000 American soldiers who tragically lost their lives or went missing during the conflict.
This memorial holds a powerful presence, both in its physical structure and the emotions it evokes. Maya Lin, the talented artist and architect who designed the Vietnam Wall, envisioned it as a space for reflection and remembrance. Her design comprises two black granite walls that form a V shape, gradually descending into the earth. The names of the fallen are intricately etched into the reflective surface, allowing visitors to see themselves and honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice.
To further capture the essence of the Vietnam Wall, I’d like to share a poignant quote from President Barack Obama, who spoke at the memorial on Memorial Day in 2012, saying, “In one of the most painful chapters in our history, we learned a lesson that should have never been forgotten: War exacts a terrible toll on our troops, and families, and societies… But here today, we remind ourselves that the sacrifices we made were for a cause that is right and just.”
Intriguing Facts about the Vietnam Wall:
- Dedication: The Vietnam Wall was officially dedicated on November 13, 1982, drawing together thousands of veterans and their families to pay their respects.
- Design Selection: Maya Lin’s design proposal faced initial controversy but was ultimately chosen out of 1,421 submissions in an international competition.
- Lengthy Etching: The names of the fallen soldiers are listed in chronological order of their casualty, starting and ending with the dates of the war (1959 and 1975, respectively).
- Healing Powers: The Vietnam Wall has been regarded as a place of healing, providing solace for veterans and families searching for closure.
- The Wall That Heals: A half-scale replica of the Vietnam Wall, known as “The Wall That Heals,” travels across the United States, allowing individuals who cannot visit Washington, D.C. to pay their respects.
- Pencil Rubbings: Visitors often create pencil rubbings of the engraved names, creating lasting impressions of their loved ones or fallen comrades.
- Personal Artifacts: Each day, visitors leave personal items such as letters, photographs, and flowers at the base of the wall, paying tribute to those they have lost.
Here’s a table highlighting the total U.S. casualties during the Vietnam War, honoring the soldiers whose names are etched on the Vietnam Wall:
|Killed in Action||47,434|
|Wounded in Action||153,303|
As we reflect upon the Vietnam Wall, we are reminded of the tremendous sacrifices made by brave men and women. It serves as a testament to their courage, and a reminder of the lasting impact war has on individuals and societies at large.
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The wall lists the names of over 58,000 men and women killed or missing in action. Each wall is 246 feet 9 inches long; the total length of the wall is 493 feet 6 inches.
The Vietnam War Memorial Wall is a sunken black granite structure composed of two walls that are each 246 feet and 9 inches long and meet at an angle of 125 degrees and 12 minutes.
Each wall of the Memorial is 246-foot-9-inch (75.21 m) long and composed of 72 black granite panels, 70 of which are inscribed, polished to a high finish, with the names of the men and women being honored Vietnam Veterans Memorial (U.S. National Park Service) The walls are sunken into the ground, with the earth behind them.
Each wall of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is 246 feet, 8 inches long. They meet at an angle of 125 degrees, 12 minutes, and point exactly to the northeast corners of the Washington Monument and Lincoln Memorial. The walls are supported along their entire length by 140 concrete pilings driven approximately 35 feet to bedrock. Height
This Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Wall is 360 feet long, an 80 percent scale of the one in Washington D.C. Missouri’s National Veterans Memorial located about 1 hour south of St. Louis, Missouri in Perryville, Missouri offers visitors an exact full-sized replica.
Answer in video
The tradition of leaving mementos at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is explored in this video. From the day it was dedicated in 1982, people have been deeply moved by the memorial and have left behind various items. A park ranger is responsible for collecting these items, but new ones often appear in their place. The National Park Service has created a historic collection out of these mementos, which now contains about 64,000 objects. Some of these items are loaned out for exhibits, while others are taken to schools to make a personal impact on students. The speaker reflects on the impact of a single picture from the collection, emphasizing the significance of individual contributions to this social history.
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The most prominent feature of the memorial is a massive wall that lists the names of the more than 58,000 servicemen and women who lost their lives during the Vietnam War.
"Of the 2,709,918 Americans who served in Vietnam, Less than 850,000 are estimated to be alive today, with the youngest American Vietnam veteran’s age approximated to be 60 years old."
An 80 percent scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., the wall measures nearly 400 feet long. The AVTT Vietnam Wall contains every name etched on the original memorial. Since its inception, hundreds of thousands of people across the U.S. have viewed the wall.