We recently had the opportunity to create a video of The Wall That Heals, which is a traveling replica of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, DC. The entire process of bringing The Wall into a community, to constructing it to seeing people experience it was tremendously impressive and emotional.
Info from The Wall That Heals website:
Bringing The Wall home to communities throughout our country allows the souls enshrined on the Memorial to exist once more among family and friends in the peace and comfort of familiar surroundings. The traveling exhibit provides thousands of veterans who have been unable to cope with the prospect of facing The Wall to find the strength and courage to do so within their own communities, thus allowing the healing process to begin.
The Wall That Heals exhibit features a three-quarter-scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. The replica is 375 feet in length and stands 7.5 feet high at its tallest point. Visitors experience The Wall rising above them as they walk towards the apex, a key feature of the design of The Wall in D.C.
The Wall That Heals is erected in a chevron-shape and visitors can do name rubbings of individual service member’s names on The Wall. The replica is constructed of Avonite, a synthetic granite, and its 140 numbered panels are supported by an aluminum frame. Machine engraving of the more than 58,000 names along with modern LED lighting provide readability of The Wall day and night.
A few details on communities The Wall is displayed:
In order to get The Wall to a specific place, the community must make many commitments, including providing 100’s of volunteers. Cookeville is the only stop this year in TN due to the commitment of Cookeville and the Putnam county community, including corporate sponsors like our client, Averitt. The stop underscores the Chamber’s “Patriotic Putnam” campaign and Averitt’s commitment to hiring 1,200 veterans by 2020.
It typically takes 6 hours to assemble The Wall. Thanks to the help of the Tennessee Tech football team and coaching staff, the build in Cookeville was completed in a little more than 4 hours.
We interviewed several volunteers, many of whom were veterans. The information below is from Josh Pack, US Navy.
“The Wall is about honoring people who sacrificed all in the Vietnam War and is also the first step to recognize all Vietnam vets and welcome them home. The Wall is not only for those who died; it shows appreciation for all. For me the entire experience was very emotional and inspiring.”
Josh volunteered during the entire event and has many touching stories. A particularly compelling one is that he helped a woman who had never been able to travel to DC to see the wall there locate a photo and name of a Vietnam vet. She and Josh both became emotional as she explained this vet was her dad – a man she had never met as she was born after he left for Vietnam. She said it was like she met him for the first time in that moment.
So if you get a chance to experience the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Wall or The Wall That Heals, take advantage of it. The travel schedule for 2018 is linked here.