“50 Years Beyond: The Vietnam Veteran Experience” Profiles The Lives And Stories Of 50 Vietnam War Veterans From Throughout The Commonwealth
The Virginia War Memorial announces the public opening of the newest major exhibit, 50 Years Beyond: The Vietnam Veteran Experience on Saturday, January 28, 2023.
The exhibit opening coincides with the 50th anniversary of the Paris Peace Accords which ended the Vietnam War in January 1973. 50 Years Beyond: The Vietnam Veteran Experience features personal stories, photos, and videos of Vietnam veterans from across the Commonwealth.
The Exhibit was made possible through funding from the Virginia War Memorial Foundation, the Memorial’s non-profit partner, with generous support by the Roller-Bottimore Foundation, Peachtree House Foundation, E. B. Duff Charitable Lead Annuity Trust, and the War Heroes’ Initiatives Fund at the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation.
Dr. Clay Mountcastle, Virginia War Memorial Director, and his staff began this project over a year ago. They recruited Vietnam Veterans across Virginia through press releases in newspapers,
publications, radio and television stations and social media, and asked them to submit stories and photos of themselves during their time in Southeast Asia. The Memorial then partnered with professional photographer and Navy veteran Laura Hatcher and videographer and Army veteran Pamela Vines to set up photo and recording sessions in Richmond, Hampton Roads, Roanoke and Northern Virginia.
“There are nearly 200,000 Vietnam Veterans living today in Virginia,” said Dr. Mountcastle. “We were extremely pleased when we received over 1,000 submissions from many of these veterans as a result of our outreach efforts. Of those who submitted, our staff chose fifty of these men and women and contacted each of them to arrange to take a current portrait of them for the exhibit,”
“Virginia is proudly home to almost 700,000 military veterans and many of them served during the Vietnam War,” said Daniel Gade, Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Veterans Services (DVS). “This war touched not only those that served but also their families and friends during the conflict. These photos and video recollections truly comprise a compelling, emotional, educational and very personal exhibit that will be of interest to all who come visit the Memorial over the next year.”