July 29, 2013 |
A LONG-DESIRED makeover of the Philadelphia Vietnam Veterans Memorial appears to finally be close at hand. Terry Williamson, president of the memorial's fund board, said yesterday that work is expected to begin in the fall to open the Spruce Street side of the 26-year-old memorial to make it more visible to passers-by. The Society Hill memorial is walled off by eight 7-foot-high, 5-foot-wide granite panels that feature scenes of the war. Williamson said the $500,000 remodeling effort would entail having the panels repositioned in two semicircles around the heart of the memorial: the wall that features the names of the 646 local soldiers who died in Vietnam.
July 17, 2013
LOUIS NAMM of Thorofare, N.J., is the Phillies' winner of Major League Baseball and People magazine's "Tribute for Heroes" campaign that honors veterans and military service members. Namm, along with representatives of the other 29 teams in baseball, will be recognized at the 2013 All-Star Game at Citi Field in New York tonight in a pregame ceremony. Namm was a sergeant in the Vietnam War when he stepped on a land mine and lost both legs. He sacrificed his body so that his men's lives would be spared, earning two Purple Hearts.
June 28, 2013
Curtis Tarr, 88, the former head of the Selective Service System who oversaw the lottery for the draft during the Vietnam War, died of pneumonia Friday at his home in Walnut Creek, Calif., his daughter, Pam Tarr, said Wednesday. President Richard Nixon appointed Mr. Tarr as director of the Selective Service System in 1970. The nation had held its first lottery drawing for the draft in December 1969, and Mr. Tarr was responsible for implementing the changes, said Dick Flahavan, spokesman for the Selective Service.
June 8, 2013 |
For some visitors, the black wall of names slanting across a Mount Laurel field Thursday was too painful to approach. Still others stepped so close to the traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial model that it seemed they would enter into it if they could, touching one or two among its 58,000 names of the Vietnam War's combat dead and gazing for many moments. "Even though it's so long ago, I still remember the two soldiers coming to say he's dead," said Jean M. Murray of Mount Laurel.
June 5, 2013 |
A replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, an acclaimed work of architecture and a solemn reminder of the human toll of the Vietnam War, will make its way Tuesday to Mount Laurel, where it will remain through the weekend. Nearly 250 feet long and bearing the names of the more than 58,000 servicemen and women who died in the war, the "Wall That Heals" is due to cross the Delaware Memorial Bridge about 8 a.m., travel north on I-295, and arrive with a motorcycle escort in Moorestown two hours later.
June 4, 2013 |
James Patrick Kelly was killed in war nearly 50 years ago. But on Sunday, Kelly, an Army second lieutenant from Hatboro, finally got recognition that will last for years to come. In a ceremony at the Wings of Freedom Aviation Museum in Horsham, a mile-long stretch of County Line Road in the township was officially dedicated as the James P. Kelly Memorial Highway. Scores of family and friends gathered at the ceremony to remember Kelly, killed Sept. 27, 1965, at age 23 in South Vietnam.
June 3, 2013 |
"This war, like all wars, must end. That's what history advises ... " - Barack Obama, May 23 Nice thought. But much as President Obama would like to close his eyes, click his heels three times, and declare the war on terror over, war is a two-way street. That's what history advises: Two sides to fight it, two to end it. By surrender (World War II), by armistice (Korea and Vietnam), or when the enemy simply disappears from the field (the Cold War). Obama says enough is enough.
May 28, 2013 |
Kristofor Stonesifer had the sad distinction of becoming the first soldier Bucks County lost in the war on terrorism. Stonesifer, a 28-year-old Army Ranger who grew up near Doylestown, died just 38 days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, when the Black Hawk helicopter he was in crashed near Kandahar, Afghanistan. When Stonesifer's parents got the news, the first to reach out to them were local Vietnam veterans, said his mother, Ruth Stonesifer. "It showed us that we have to get out and be part of the community and do as much as we can to help other veterans," she said last week.
May 24, 2013 |
YORBA LINDA, Calif. - U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Doug Burns was on a night reconnaissance mission searching for enemy trucks when he was shot down by antiaircraft fire and taken prisoner during the Vietnam War. Burns broke three vertebrae when he ejected into a rice paddy and spent the first weeks of his captivity strapped to a concrete pallet and then months at a time in solitary confinement. His wife and three children didn't know for years whether he was alive or dead - and when he arrived home 61/2 years later, Burns learned his wife had left him for another man. "It was hard to take, but that's what it was," said Burns, who is now 78 and remarried.
May 24, 2013
THERE ARE MANY kinds of desperation, as many as the stars above and the souls beneath them. The death of a child, the disintegration of a marriage, homes lost to floodwaters and whirlwinds, all of these things can drive you to - and beyond - the point of suicide. And yet, there are sources of strength as varied as the sorrow. For one man, that source was found in unwritten words, tapped out on prison walls and shared with his captured brothers in Vietnam. Major Gen. John Borling, a 6 1/2-year "guest" at the infamous Hanoi Hilton is, like Joyce Kilmer and Wilfred Own, a soldier-poet.