November Brings Series of Events Honoring Northeast Louisiana Vietnam Veterans

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Vietnam Veterans Honored with Documentary

Veterans Day Month of Honor stands with Vietnam Veterans

MONROE, LA, October 25, 2010— November 4, 2010 will be a nostalgic and perhaps emotional day for Vietnam veterans of Northeast Louisiana. Some called them Baby Killers…We call them HEROES will premiere at 6 pm at Monroe Civic Center’s Jack Howard Theatre. In honor of the event, Mayor Jamie Mayo of Monroe and Mayor Dave Norris of West Monroe will issue a joint proclamation.

Vietnam Veterans FilmThe official brief synopsis of the documentary reads:

“Contrary to the hero’s welcome received by other veterans, the majority of men returning from Vietnam were barely given a handshake of appreciation…much less parades and accolades. Training did not prepare them to gracefully blend back into civilian life afterward, especially if some cruelly perceive you to be a ‘baby killer’. This documentary takes a closer look at these unheralded heroes and their family life as they anticipate the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall’s first visit to Monroe.”

Fortunately, Americans now understand that any animosity against government policy can be solved through the democratic process and not by antagonizing the armed forces. Director Rodney Ray said, “Vietnam veterans paid a huge price for this country and for future servicemen. Their sacrifice ensures that no modern day veteran will endure persecution by their own countrymen ever again.”

The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall will be available for viewing at Chennault Aviation and Military Museum of Louisiana (CAMMLA) continuously beginning on Friday, November 5 until Sunday, November 7. Counselors and aid for the visually impaired will be available at the museum as well. 

Opening Ceremony:
Friday, Nov. 5 at 9:00 am
Event Features: Presentation of the colors by the University of Louisiana at Monroe Honor Guard, appearances by Mayor Jamie Mayo and Mayor Dave Norris, and special guest speaker George Finck, Lt Colonel, USAF (Ret). Lt. Col. Finck is a recipient of the United States Air Force Cross.

Veterans Remembrance Day Ceremony:
Saturday, Nov. 6 at 10:30 am
Event Features: Presentation of the colors by Barksdale Air Force Base Honor Guard, a T6 Trainer Missing Man Flyover, the West Monroe High School Choir, a 21 gun salute, the dedication of a Vietnam helicopter and remarks by special guest speaker Col. John Reitzell.

Closing Ceremony:
Sunday, Nov. 7 at 4:00 pm
Informal Event Features: Vietnam veterans sharing their stories, patriotic medleys and the playing of ‘Taps.’ The wall will be closed directly following this ceremony.

The traveling wall is a 3/5 scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC. It is made of aluminum (the original memorial is made of solid granite), stands six feet tall at the center and covers almost 300 feet from end to end. The wall is accurate as of 2005 and contains the names of over 58,000 fallen heroes from across the country, including those from the following Northeast Louisiana cities:

Arcadia, Baskin, Bastrop, Bernice, Bonita, Calhoun, Choudrant, Clayton, Colfax, Collinston, Columbia, Dodson, Dry Prong, Dunn, Extension, Farmerville, Ferriday, Franklin, Frogmore, Gilbert, Grambling, Harrisonburg, Jena, Jonesboro, Jonesville, Kilbourne, Lake Providence, Mangham, Mer Rouge, Monroe, Oak Grove, Olla, Pioneer, Pollock, Rayville, Ruston, Sicily Island, Simsboro, Sterlington, Tallulah, Trout, Vidalia, Waterproof, West Monroe, Winnfield and Winnsboro

A public forum hosted by Behavioral Medicine and Addictive Disorders (a state licensed substance abuse treatment center) will be held at the University of Louisiana at Monroe’s Conference Center (7th floor of the library) on Friday, November 5 at 6 p.m. Combat veterans from Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom and Afghanistan will be on hand to discuss their personal experiences with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)  and to enlighten community members about these circumstances that ail many servicemen and women.

Although not all Vietnam veterans suffer from PTSD, an astounding number of men and women have yet to heal from external and internal wounds acquired during this era. The goals of the documentary, traveling wall, and public forum are to help the healing process for both veterans and their loved ones.

Vietnam Veterans Document Tickets on Sale

Tickets are now on sale for …We Call Them HEROES at The R-Squared Building: 1309 Louisville Ave., Monroe, La and at Chennault Museum: 701 Kansas Lane, Monroe, La. All proceeds will go to CAMMLA. General Admission tickets are $25 each. Vietnam veterans and their spouses can receive a special discount price of $15 a ticket. Tickets must be purchased in person to receive the discount. Cash or checks endorsed to CAMMLA will be accepted. Tickets are limited, but in the event tickets are still available on the day of the screening, they can be purchased at the box office.

  • For any inquiries, call the museum’s director, Nell Calloway, at 318-362-5540
  • Visit www.r2films.net for a sneak peek at the heroes’ stories featured in the documentary


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