Vietnam 'Moving Wall' Memorial in Franklin County - WSET.com - ABC13

Vietnam 'Moving Wall' Memorial in Franklin County

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Reporter:  David Tate

Franklin Co., VA - For the second time in three years, the Vietnam Memorial "Moving Wall" has made its way to our area.  And again, it's come to Franklin County.

It displays the names of more than 58,000 people who gave the ultimate sacrifice in that war.

It is an exact replica of the wall that is in Washington DC, except it's half scale. Nonetheless it is a powerful reminder of the sacrifices of war and the folks in Franklin County are proud to be hosting this exhibit once again this year.

Debra Weir and her son Benjamin put the finishing touches on the display which will spend the weekend in the Franklin County Recreational Park.

"This is a huge special event, a big undertaking that we are very proud to bring to Franklin County," said Weir, who works with the county's commerce and leisure department.

It's especially meaningful for Weir.  Wile her job is to promote tourism in Franklin County as a former First Sergeant in the US Army this event has a whole different meaning.

"When we had it here the first time we just heard the comments, 'Oh, this is so great to have it in our own backyard. Thank you very much.' And me being a veteran I was honored to be a part of this," said Weir.

When this wall first came to Franklin County in 2009, an estimated 15,000 people made the trip out to see it including Robert Barbour, who will be part of the opening color guard this year.

"This here is my time. Like I said, I wasn't there and these guys were and I owe it to them," said Barbour.

That's the point of the moving wall: Bring the memorial to those who can't get to the real thing.  It's a mobile reminder not only of a war gone by, but of those wars we are still in.

"With the current conflicts that we have now, we need to let young people realize - we're an all volunteer military now and the sacrifices that those guys made couldn't have been done without sacrifices that people did before us," said Weir.

The wall will remain open all day until 2 p.m. Monday. It will then move to North Carolina.

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