The Vietnam Memorial sits on the National Mall in Washington DC and is dedicated to those who lost their lives during the Vietnam War. The memorial erected in 1982 contains the names of the 58,195 Americans. Seeing the memorial reminds one of just how great the loss was and really makes it personal.
The Memorial is made up of polished black granite slabs that form an ‘L’ shape over 500 feet in length. One end points to the Washington Monument and the other to the Lincoln Memorial. The names of the dead are inscribed chronologically based on when they were killed.
It is customary that those honoring the fallen leave personal items, and of course, the stars and stripes.
The Vietnam Memorial – Washington DC
A sampling of the names engraved into the granite slabs. It is very powerful and moving to see this in person.
The morning of my visit I met this Vietnam Veteran that was visiting the memorial with his grandson.
The granite is so highly polished the reflections of those visiting become part of the Memorial. Maybe it is an unexpected benefit of building this Memorial that loved ones would be so connected to their lost family members. It is said that it brings the past and the present together.
When visiting Washington you absolutely must stop and see the Vietnam Memorial. It is a powerful and almost spiritual experience.