Monday, July 20, 2015

A Wall That Heals

Thousands of visitors came to Gloucester recently to see The Wall That Heals, a traveling replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.  The Wall That Heals was greeted at the Massachusetts state line, and given a motorcycle escort, by members of the State Police, Gloucester Police and many non-profit veteran rider organizations.

A public ceremony was well attended and Governor Baker offered moving remarks about the sacrifice of our veterans and their families. The Wall That Heals gave many of us an opportunity to honor those who were involved in the war and to help give comfort to those still wounded by painful memories.

This memorial, which serves as an invitation for public examination, makes the enormity of loss so visible that it also inspires private reflection.  I had several other opportunities to experience that reflection, by day reading the names inscribed on the wall, and at midnight I returned; even at this hour others were there in quiet contemplation. Some left personal items, others left tears, but I am sure all of us left feeling better for the opportunity to honor our dead.

Thanks are due to the United Veterans Council of Gloucester, the Gloucester Veterans Service office, the many volunteers (pictured below), and public officials who made it possible for the Wall That Heals to be with us.  Here is a link to The Wall That Heals Website  so that you can learn more about the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.