A complete historical picture is helpful to future generations.
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Foundation has launched an initiative — “Faces Never Forgotten” — to obtain photographs of every U.S. service member killed in action in Vietnam.
When completed, the online Wall of Faces, will include photographs and capsule biographical information for each name etched on the Vietnam Memorial wall in Washington, D.C.
In our state, the Missouri Press Association has joined the effort because newspapers are able to communicate the goals of the “Faces Never Forgotten” project to their local audiences.
“It’s an interesting goal,” said Bryan Jones, editor of the Missouri Press News Magazine. “To think of all the names on the wall and to put faces with them is a neat project and fills a historic need.”
As an MPA member, the Jefferson City News Tribune is working with the American Legion to spread the word.
When the newspaper published its first news story about the project on July 8, photographs were being sought for 24 mid-Missouri soldiers and airmen.
Thus far, as updated in a story in the Sunday News Tribune, 13 additional photos of mid-Missourians have been acquired, leaving 11 still being sought.
“Unfortunately, Vietnam veterans were not well received when they came home from doing their duty,” said Tom Goodin, a past commander of the American Legion Department of Missouri and a past president of the local Post 5.” We’re happy the American Legion can help get the recognition they deserve.
Among the more recent contributions, a photograph of Victor Cassmeyer was provided by his sister, Judith Lambayan, Osage Beach.
“I would hope everyone would get a photo for their lost son or brother,” she said. “We want to remember them and want others to remember their sacrifice.
“Faces Never Forgotten” offers a visual way to remember.
On the continuum of history, this is our time to be part of it, and to record it.
Copyright Jefferson City News Tribune. Reprinted with permission.