Traveling Vietnam Memorial Wall opens in Dacono

9NEWS @ 4. 9/15/2016

KUSA – It’s a part of our nation’s capital right here in Colorado: a traveling version of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. It will be in Dacono until Sunday, as part of an effort to honor and remember all veterans.

“I’ve had people say many times, ‘people come to touch the wall and it touches them,’” said Greg Goettsch, VFW Post 9741 Quartermaster and a Vietnam War veteran.

This version of the Vietnam Memorial Wall is slightly smaller than the original in Washington D.C. It is 80-percent of the size, but evokes 100-percent of the feelings of the original one.

“I haven’t turned around and looked at it yet. It’s very emotional,” said Goettsch.

This is the American Veterans Traveling Tribute version of the Vietnam Memorial. It travels across the country to bring the wall to those who may not be able to reach the real thing.

“It’s a tradition for people, if they know someone or served alongside someone, to bring things,” said Stephanie Hudson, Furniture Row Store Manager.

The wall’s Colorado home for the next few days is on a plot of land offered up by Furniture Row in Dacono. It is all part of a two-year effort by the local VFW, Rotary Club and dozens of volunteers to bring the wall here.

“It does not just happen overnight,” Goettsch said.

When it does happen, though, so do other things. For some, the memories I brings up are painful.

“Part of what I see on the wall is people we couldn’t save,” Goettsch said.

For others, it offers a chance to heal.

“The hardest is when you start looking and reading names of people,” said Furniture Row’s Toby Tinsley. “My dad is a Vietnam veteran, Navy, and so he will be out here tomorrow with me to share the wall.”

This traveling version of the Vietnam Memorial will be at Furniture Row off of I-25 in Dacono until Sunday afternoon. There will be a closing ceremony at 3 p.m. to mark the end of the wall’s time here.

Copyright 2016 KUSA


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