Community members and students lined the escort route waving flags to welcome The Wall That Heals to northern Berks County on Tuesday, Sept. 19.
The day started with a noon presentation at Fleetwood Park followed by an escort of police and the Reading Motorcycle Club from Fleetwood through Topton to Kutztown, arriving at Kutztown Park’s Timothy Breidigam Baseball Field.
Volunteers, including local students, set up the traveling replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on Wednesday, Sept. 20 and the following day a crowd came out for the opening ceremony. The public was invited to visit at any time during the exhibit’s display through Sept. 24.
During the exhibit’s display at the park, the Kutztown Community Library’s StoryWalk featured the book “The Wall” by Eve Bunting and illustrated by Ronald Himler on display along the walking path around the Kutztown Park playground area.
Playing “Amazing Grace,” the Kutztown Pipe Band led a procession of community members in front of The Wall That Heals during the candlelight vigil on Friday, Sept. 22.
Sandy Green, of Kutztown Community Partnership, welcomed those in attendance followed by the singing of the National Anthem by Kutztown student Anna Stump. Names were read by Kutztown Vietnam Veterans Breakfast Club members Tim Haring, Joe Wessner, Jeff DeTurk and Glenn Godshall. Brandywine Heights student Jared Steventon played “Taps.”
A closing ceremony on Sunday, Sept. 24 1:45 p.m., after deadline, features closing remarks by Eddie Gehringer, Retiring of Colors by Topton American Legion Honor Guard, and the singing of “God Bless the U.S.A.” by Jonathan Quier.
“On behalf of the Kutztown Vietnam Veterans Breakfast Club and Kutztown Community Partnership, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to all the generous donors who supported The Wall That Heals,” said KCP in a statement. “Your contributions have made it possible for us to honor and remember the sacrifices of our veterans and their families.”
“Your support has helped bring this traveling replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to Kutztown, providing a place for healing, reflection, and remembrance. The Wall That Heals serves as a powerful reminder of the lives lost and the impact of the Vietnam War on our nation,” said KCP.
Source: Berkshire mont