Over 58,000 men and women who served in the Vietnam War, died there. Their names are inscribed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, DC.
However, more of our military died after they returned home from the war. With both physical and psychological wounds, they suffered for some time before eventually passing on.
The names of this latter group of service men & women are not eligible for placement on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall, although their death resulted from their service. Yet they are still honored at the National Mall in Washington, DC with the "In Memory Plaque", and an event known as "In Memory Day".
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Kim, I'm so sorry to hear of the loss of your father! It is so tough to watch someone who suffers the effects of Agent Orange. It is such a shame he was unable to get the liver transplant in time.
To have your dad honored at the "In Memory" event, you will need to contact the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund. Their website is http://www.vvmf.org/ . You will need a copy of his DD-214 to show his Vietnam service. These people are really kind, and will help you honor your dad in the best way possible.
Try your best to go to the event. It will make you cry, but also make you really proud. I have been twice, and each time, it made me feel like I was doing the best I could do to honor not only my husband's military service, but his life as well.
My dad died last Thursday. He is my hero. He served with the Third Marine Division as a rifleman in Con Thien. He was the only survivor in his group on three different occassions and was one of three that made it out alive on September 7, 1967. He received the purple heart and was honorably discharged as a Lance Corporal on January 1, 1968 after enduring multiple surgeries at the Great Lakes Naval Hospital and endless abuse from the public during his stay there.
He suffered silently these past years with unspeakable horrors but never failed to be an amazing dad, strong, loving and selfless. He was receiving VA benefits from complications associated with Agent Orange. He was plagued with atrial fibrillation, cirrhosis of of the liver, diabetes and assorted other maladies attributed to AO.
He was just accepted onto Vanderbilt's liver transplant list in October and was a favorable candidate. After going to Vandy for routine appointments last week, his decreased liver function caused his kidneys to fail and he was taken into ICU by ambulance and he never rebounded.
I'd love to get him into the Memory Event. Thanks for whatever direction you can offer.
That is truly a meaningful way to remember the heroes of the Vietnam war.