Monday, March 21, 2016

About March 30th: What is Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day?

Years ago our country sent young Americans off to war, instructing them to go fulfill their duties and serve Uncle Sam. They did what was asked of them and thousands upon thousands of lives were lost. For those who returned home it was anything but a hero's welcome as they found a nation had turned against them in anger. How wrong that was for our Vietnam Veterans - and how many years it has taken to acknowledge what we as a country had done.



Wednesday March 30th, is a chance to acknowledge our veterans and to break that silence which should have never existed. On Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans day, let us join together as Americans and take the time to say "thank you" to those who served. Thousands of lives were lost, and for those who returned, the scars have never faded. It's time to shake the hand of a hero and acknowledge them as our country failed to do so long ago.




Since 2001 when this date was proposed as a national observance, many states have embraced the effort to thank and honor those who arrived home to anything but a welcome. While there are events and ceremonies which will be held across across the country, unfortunately, fifteen years later, there is no national recognition for this date. For all who served, suffered, and came home with the wounds and memories which have haunted them, it is time to appreciate their sacrifices. It's now up to us to step forward and acknowledge those men and women from so many years ago. Please pause to salute their courage and honor their service - not only on March 30th, but everyday going forward. Never pass up the chance to thank a veteran for your freedom!


Some background on WHVVD: Mr. José Ramos, an Army combat medic, has been working for over a decade to have Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day established as an annual observation. His tireless efforts served to raise awareness for having an official date set aside to honor our Vietnam Veterans. Written in March of 2015, the letter explains that since 2000 his efforts and goals have been to see this date acknowledged. Frustrated by a lack of interest, their event was cancelled.




For all those who served, suffered, and came home with scars of so many kinds, it seems an insult to still not have a day to mark this observance. It's past time to appreciate the sacrifices made by all who served; it's up to us to step forward and acknowledge those men and women from so many years ago. We salute their courage and we honor their service - not only on March 30th, but everyday going forward. Never pass up the chance to thank a veteran for your freedom!





March 30th, 2015: Cards for heroes handed out at the American Legion in Ocean City, MD, who along with VVA Chapter 851, hosts an event each year.



It was an honor to visit with these soldiers. Pictured here is Nelson Kelly, president of Ocean City VVA Chapter 1091, along with another veteran reading a card at least year's event.



WELCOME HOME.









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