Vietnam veterans gathered at the State Capitol March 25 to break ground for the Texas Capitol Vietnam Veterans monument, which will stand as an honor to all who served in the Vietnam War and a permanent memorial to the 3,417 Texans who never came home. Joseph Galloway, a newspaper correspondent awarded the Bronze Star for rescuing a wounded soldier, gave the keynote speech.
Dubbed “The 3417” project, planning has been under way since the state approved it in 2005. Private donors have contributed $1.3 million, according to the monument’s organizing committee.
Jerry Patterson, Chairman of the Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB), said that the monument “is a long overdue honor for Vietnam veterans.”
According to the Texas Capitol Vietnam Veterans organization, the more than 3,400 Texans who died in the Cold War conflict, which spanned nearly two decades, along with all those who served during the war, will be recognized with the bronze monument. Once completed, the monument will stand 14 feet tall and feature a sculpture of infantry figures. The names of the dead will be stamped on dog tags entombed at the monument. A matching set of the dog tags is on display at the LBJ library until July.
The Texas VLB stands with those who honor all the men and women who served their country during the Vietnam War, as well as all those who serve to protect our nations’ freedoms.