On the ground in front of Union Station during Memorial Day weekend, Vietnam veterans slowly knelt down to write their name and branch of service on a large map of the Vietnam War. Some had helpers — young grandchildren to get on the ground for them, looking up to ask questions about a war that is otherwise seldom discussed.
From Navy to Air Force, Marines to Army, nearly 100 Vietnam veterans and their families marked their service on a large 13 by 20-foot map of the Vietnam War on Sunday, May 29, during the annual Bank of America Celebration at the Station.
While some family members chose to write remembrances in the ocean because they couldn’t recall exact locations, others pulled out their cellphones and asked their loved ones where they served.
At Kansas City PBS, we created the map to spark conversation between family members and their fellow veterans and as part of our veterans focus in advance of Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s upcoming documentary series The Vietnam War.
Vietnam veterans and their families, as well as refugees and civilians who lived through the Vietnam era are invited to share their stories with KCPT here.
At the event Flatland KC’s Binita Dahal asked veterans and other attendees what comes mind when they hear Vietnam War.