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Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Washington DC

Categories: Monuments, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.6/5 based on 7,500+ reviews on the web
Honor the thousands of Americans who served during the Vietnam War at Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Adjacent to the National Mall in Constitution Gardens, the memorial consists of two giant stone walls, stretching almost 76 m (250 ft) long, engraved with the names of more than 58,000 fallen U.S. soldiers. Despite its simplicity, the awe-inducing monument makes a powerful statement. The Women's Memorial statue, depicting two nurses treating a fallen soldier, represents the importance of women in the Vietnam War. After your visit, make the short walk down to the Lincoln Memorial or past the reflecting pools to the Washington Monument. A visit to Vietnam Veterans Memorial represents just the start of the adventure when you use our Washington DC itinerary builder to plot your vacation.
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  • Every american should see this. There were several volunteers ready to explain how to understand the memorial and answer any questions. We spoke with a man who was a Veteran of the war..... incredible...  read more »
  • This is the most moving of all the memorials. For raw emotion, this memorial is peerless. The stream of people moving thru and the tokens left are heart rending. Whether you are personally connected w...  read more »
  • It's a memorial. It's the statues are cool. It's hard to have any hard opinion on it due to the fact that it is a memorial. 
  • My dad doesn't talk much about his time in Vietnam. When I visited the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, I didn't think it would have the impact it had on me. Before I arrived, I texted my dad, asking him if there was anyone I could pay my respects to on his behalf. He sent me the name James Taylor, but that he did not know what year he had been killed in action. I quickly Googled his name and referenced Vietnam and the city my dad went to High School (Rensselaer, IN) and found the Vietnam Veterans Virtual Wall. It was then that I finally connected to the anguish of Vietnam and understood, for the first time why my dad didn't want to talk about it. I found James' name on Panel 33W, 35. The experience brought unexpected tears. The Vietnam War has been a part of many Americans' lives, and the history shaped our country in so many ways. But when you are able to experience something visceral so many years after the fact, you know that it's real. The Vietnam Memorial Wall makes that possible. There were over 58,000 names on that wall. But, thanks to technology, I was able to make a personal connection with a young man I never met. Thanks to Google, I learned about James Taylor's story, where he died (Binh Long Province), that he had an older sister (Joan), and a younger brother (Steve). I learned that he'd played basketball, which is probably how my dad knew him. I was able to envision a person, where all I could see was thousands of names. I don't know many places that can create such a real experience. I am grateful to all of the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice to serve our country, and I am personally thankful to Lt. James Edward Taylor for allowing me to feel, if just for a moment, a connection to him and his life, through my father. Thank you for your sacrifice.
  • I first visited the memorial in November 1982, shortly after it was completed. I was overwhelmed with emotion. I was there to look for the name of the Marine who is on my Vietnam MIA bracelet that I started wearing in 1974 and still continue to wear it everyday. Stg. DiReyes Ibenez is a Marine who went to Vietnam on June 4, 1967. His first orders was to lead a team of 17 men on a reconnaissance to find an open field large enough for helicopter to land and set up a base camp. When evening came, they were at a ridge and decided to spend the night. The men took turns on watch. It was a new moon and raining so visibility was poor. At 2am one of the men heard a noise. He crawled to where Sgt. Ibenez's post was. He didn't see him and thought he went to investigate the noise and crawled back to his post. In the morning when the troop was getting ready to move on, he was missing. The search found drag marks, bloody leaves and a bloody partial dental plate. His weapon was planted in the ground with his helmet on top. The bloody articles were collected and sent back to the States. Since he had a very rare blood type and the dental plate was made for him while he was in the Marines, it was concluded that he was MIA on July 5, 1967, barely 24 hours after he arrived. His name is on panel 21E line 58. I made a rubbing of his name and left a yellow rose. Every year I go back around the day he went MIA and leave a rose. I continue to wear my bracelet every day even though it's 2016. My family knows that when I die I want to have my bracelet left at the bottom of panel 21E. All of the items that are placed at the wall are collected each day and catalogued for the Museum Resource Center. I still shed tears each year when I visit. Although I don't know Sgt. Di Reyes Ibenez personally, he is a part of my life. God bless him and all the other people whose name is on the wall. Semper Fi!
  • By far the best done memorial to date. Numerous emotions will hit you, but most notably sadness seeing all of the names of our fallen heroes. I make sure to read at least two dozen different names each visit to help their memories live on forever.
  • The American involvement in the Indochina conflict was an unequivocal tragedy, a pointless and bloody war with a devastating toll. The memorial stands a silent and powerful rebuke to the senseless deaths laid at the altar of French colonialism and American imperialism.
  • The most sober and reverent memorial on the National Mall. Having come to The Wall many times since childhood, it still strikes me at how emotional a visit to this memorial can be. Its so simple in its design, but the reflections on the polished stone feels haunting as you read the names of literally thousands of people who lost their lives during the Vietnam conflict. Its one of the few, if not only remaining, memorial where people still genuinely behave in a respectful manner with all the decorum due. Its worth taking your time passing up and down the walk way from both sides and then circling back to see the other two associated statue memorials, Women in Combat & the Three Soldiers. A must see for all DC visitors.
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