A welcome parade Thursday, Sept. 10, for the Vietnam Veterans Moving Wall will highlight the kickoff to a weekend-long event that will feature not only the replica of the Washington, D.C., memorial, but of the Canadian version of the wall as well.
As part of the “Stronger Together Operation Welcome Home” event that will take place at Freedom Park Thursday, Sept. 10, through Monday, Sept. 14, on the north side of New Richmond, the welcoming of the walls into New Richmond will take place about 11:30 a.m., Thursday morning.
The motorcade will include a motorcycle escort north through New Richmond along Knowles Avenue.
All area residents are encouraged to line the street in honor of those whose names are on the walls and those who have served.
Throughout the day Thursday, the walls will be erected in Freedom Park with the opening of displays on site set to take place at 8 a.m., Friday, Sept. 11.
But before the opening Friday, a silent opening of The Wall will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday night.
When the display opens for public viewing on Friday, a number of area schools will transport hundreds of children to the memorial for viewing between the hours of 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and Friday’s scheduled events will conclude with a 9-11 remembrance.
The park will be opened again 8 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 12..
Saturday and Sunday will have scheduled programs in the afternoon.
On Saturday, a Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs program will include WDVA Secretary John A. Scocos and former WDVA Secretary Ray Boland in attendance.
And on Sunday, a special program entitled “Our Story” will begin at 2 p.m.
On both Saturday and Sunday, any Vietnam era veteran will be eligible to receive one of the 3,000 Vietnam veteran lapel pins that will be available.
Any veteran who served on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces from Nov. 1, 1955, through May 15, 1975, are eligible to receive the lapel pin.
According to Scottie Ard, a member of The Moving Wall committee, these pins were scheduled to be formally released nationally to the public this coming November, but through the efforts of the committee, a special allotment was made available for this event.
The event will be officially closed with a ceremony at 10 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 14.
The Moving Wall will be open 24 hours per day with display and event staff on-site between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.
County veterans service officers will be on-site and ADA parking will also be available.
For more information, visit newrichmondwi.gov or visit facebook.com/themovingwallnrwi.
Area soldiers names on The Wall
In all, The Wall includes nearly 60,000 names of soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice. Among the names are four from New Richmond and several others from across St. Croix County.
Those Vietnam veterans from New Richmond whose names are included on the wall are:
-- Gary Joseph Halverson - Panel W44, Line 25
Gary Halverson was born March 12, 1949, and served in the U.S. Army. He was an infantryman in C Company, 1st BN, 2nd Infantry, 1st INF Division, USARV. His tour began March 4, 1968, and he was killed at Binh Long Province, South Vietnam, on Sept. 11, 1968.
-- Robert Allen Singerhouse - Panel 3E, Line 122
Robert Singerhouse was born Nov. 6, 1945, and served in the U.S. Army. He was an infantryman in C Company, 1st BN, 26th Infantry, 1st INF Division, USARV. He began his tour of Vietnam Sept. 25, 1965, and was killed in South Vietnam Dec. 3, 1965.
-- James Lewis Hamlet - Panel 21E, Line 83
James Hamlet was born Sept. 8, 1946, and served in the Marine Corps. He was a combat engineer with C Company, 1st Eng BN, 1st Mardiv, III MAF. He was killed in action in the Quang Nam Province of South Vietnam.
-- Thomas Eugene Severson - Panel 13W, Line 107
Thomas Severson was born Dec. 27, 1950, and served in the Army with HHC, 1st BN, 506th Infantry, 101 ABN Div. He started his time in Vietnam Oct. 18, 1969, and died in action at Thua Thien, South Vietnam, March 10, 1970.
St. Croix County soldiers
The complete list of soldiers from St. Croix County whose names are on the Vietnam Memorial Wall are as follows:
-- Robert Louis Cloutier, Somerset;
-- Thomas Walter Faber, Wilson;
-- Richard Carl Fina, Hudson;
-- Gary Joseph Halverson, New Richmond;
-- James Lewis Hamlet, New Richmond;
-- Vernon Lee Nelson, Glenwood City;
-- Jon Edward Reed, Somerset;
-- Edward Harold Rixmann, Star Prairie;
-- James Aloysius Schachtner, Somerset;
-- Thomas Eugene Severson, New Richmond;
-- Robert Allen Singerhouse, New Richmond; and
-- Kenneth Eugene Smith, Woodville.