The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall will soon arrive in South Jersey, making stops in Salem County from September 25 through 29, and in Buena Borough from October 3 through 7. The tribute to the Vietnam War’s fallen heroes in Salem County will occur at Pennsville’s Riverview Park and include a public ceremony at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, September 25. Guests may visit 24 hours a day through Sunday, September 29.
“It has truly been a privilege to help realize this community initiative, said Anthony Mulford, programs and communications chair for the Salem County Veterans Coalition. “Sadly, all too often, I see that the cost of our way of living in this great nation of ours is taken for granted, the sacrifices of those who have made it possible forgotten with time.
“Hopefully, this event will provide an educational experience for those who come to visit and a newfound appreciation of those sacrifices realized,” Mulford continued. “We must never forget: Freedom is not free….”
The wall is a 3/5 scale of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington DC, standing six feet tall at the center and covering almost 300 feet from end to end, according to the travelingwall.us website. Any disabled veteran residing in Salem County who wishes to visit the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall and needs transportation may call 856-339-8644. Transportation will be available Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The Wall will be escorted into Buena Borough by several veterans’ groups and the opening ceremony will commence at 6 p.m. on October 3. The Wall will be open for visitation daily, through October 7, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
“The purpose of the Wall is to allow people to pay their respects, rekindle friendships and have a chance to witness this national monument, right here at home,” said Buena Borough Mayor David Zappariello. “Our opening ceremony will be a momentous event, that will be attended by many area veterans, public officials and community residents. It will be a moment of immense pride and an opportunity to show our support as a community, to those veterans who have sacrificed so much. The opening program will feature keynote speaker, Senator Chris Brown, a Vietnam War veteran pinning ceremony and a full memorial service performed by Last Salute.”
For more information about volunteer opportunities, donations, or general information regarding the Buena event, contact Katrina D’Alessandro at 936-788-3389. Additional information about the Wall can be found on the Facebook page “The Moving Wall Visits the Borough of Buena.”