NH DAR remembers and honors Vietnam veterans with Fallen Heroes Moving WallBy JOHN KOZIOL
Union Leader Correspondent
September 18. 2017 8:13PM
TILTON — The 228 New Hampshire servicemen who died in the Vietnam War were honored and remembered Monday by the Daughters of the American Revolution during a ceremony at the New Hampshire Veterans Home.
The ceremony, which also included a presentation of certificates to the 50 Vietnam veterans who live at the Veterans Home, was highlighted by the New Hampshire Daughters of the American Revolution’s Fallen Heroes Moving Wall.
The wall is a nine panel display featuring the replica dog tags of each of the fallen, along with a card bearing his hometown, name and rank, branch of service and age at death.
“The average age was 19,” and they were all men, said Julie Pile, who is a member of the Molly Reid Chapter of the NHDAR and chair of the state organization’s Vietnam War Commemoration.
According to www.vietnamwar50th.com, the nationwide effort to commemorate the Vietnam War has nearly 11,000 partners and has done nearly as many events to date.
On June 4, during a service at the NH Veterans Cemetery in Boscawen, the NH DAR presented its Moving Wall to the public, calling the name of each of the dead and ringing a bell in their memory.
The Moving Wall has since been displayed in Rochester, Portsmouth, Newington, Plaistow, Hollis, Derry, Amherst and at the Veterans Administration Medical Centers in Manchester and White River Junction, Vt. It will be at Rivier University from Nov. 13-22.
Three years in the making, the Moving Wall was brought to the Veterans Home through the DAR’s Mary Butler Chapter, whose regent, Adele Bausor of New Hampton, had two brothers who served in the military during the Vietnam war, one of whom saw combat.
Bausor signed the certificates that were presented to the Vietnam veterans, and that on behalf of the DAR and a grateful nation, were given to the recipient “in recognition of valor, service, sacrifice during the Vietnam War.”
Patricia Holt, a DAR member from Derry, said her husband Walter knew some of the names on the Wall, including those of the five NH National Guardsmen, most from the Manchester area, who were killed by a land mine on Aug. 26, 1969.
Roland Huse, of Keene, who served eight years in the Army, including as a gunsmith in a “gun pool,” recalled that he was in Vietnam during the early 1960s when the conflict was just starting to intensify. He never saw combat there, but instead helped teach soldiers about the then-new AR-15 rifle.
Huse appreciated the certificate he received from the DAR and said the Moving Wall ceremony was impactful.
“It’s important to the guys here,” he said, “even if some of them didn’t come.”
A conflict that divided the nation, the Vietnam War, which ended in 1975 with the fall of South Vietnam, is in the news again with the first part of Ken Burns’ new documentary about it appearing Sunday night on PBS.
Among the many at the Veterans Home watching was Huse.
“Damn right I watched it,” said Huse. “I learned something. It’s history. It will be an eye-opener for a lot of people. I highly recommend it.”