Officials from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund estimate that 40 percent of those who visit The Wall in Washington, D.C. are too young to remember the war or any of the more than 58,000 people whose names appear on the memorial.
To keep the memories alive, an $85 million learning center is being build underground at the National Mall to educate visitors about the Vietnam War and those who fought and died there. Exhibits will include a timeline and a sampling of items left at The Wall by loved ones of those who died in the war.
Perhaps the most spectacular display being planned is a larger-than-life wall of photos of the men and women whose names are etched on the memorial, to be shown on each of their birthdays.
It’s a way to remind visitors that the people who fought and died in Vietnam were in fact people, not just faceless names on a monument.
To that end, the Memorial Fund and FedEx have started a Call for Photos campaign to gather images of those who died in Vietnam. Friends and family member can bring their photos to any of the more than 1,600 FedEx Office Print and Ship centers to be scanned for use at the Education Center at The Wall. Contributors will be asked to fill out a form identifying the person and will be asked to share a memory of that person.