MOAA will join dozens of other military and veterans groups as part of a free, three-day event in Washington, D.C., this month recognizing the 50th anniversary of the departure of the last U.S. combat troops from Vietnam.
“Welcome Home! A Nation Honors our Vietnam Veterans and their Families” will take place May 11-13 on the National Mall.
MOAA members are encouraged to take in the historical exhibits, interactive displays, formal ceremonies, static Vietnam-era helicopters and nightly sundown concerts, and to visit MOAA’s booth to receive information and ask questions about ongoing legislative efforts supporting Vietnam veterans and their families and survivors.
MOAA also will premiere Return to Hanoi: 50 Years of Freedom, a documentary short about a group of prisoners of war who recently returned to Vietnam. During their trip, the group visited the Hanoi Hilton, a former prison turned museum, and met with a few of their former adversaries. Some of the trip attendees spent more than six years as prisoner, and two of the men flew home 50 years to the day they were released from prison.
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“MOAA will be at the event to honor our Vietnam veterans and ensure they know MOAA is always fighting to preserve their well-earned benefits,” MOAA President and CEO Lt. Gen. Brian T. Kelly, USAF (Ret), said. “Like all of our nation’s volunteers who served in time of war, these men and women are heroes and deserve our gratitude.”
More than 90 organizations will be participating in the event, as will military bands, honor guard units and drill teams; Gold Star families; representatives from national, military, and Smithsonian museums; high school bands; and Junior ROTC drill teams. A formal ribbon-cutting ceremony May 11 will open Camp Legacy, home to events and exhibits from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day of the event. Maps and more details are available at this link.
A “Welcome Home” event May 13 at West Potomac Park will include a multimedia celebration with musical performances, dramatic storytelling, and videos that portray the story of Vietnam veterans and highlight the sacrifices of their families and the contributions made by U.S. allies and citizen-volunteers who supported American troops during the Vietnam War period.
Visit VietnamWar50th.com for more information on the event.
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