Eagan American Legion Post 594 recently became a Registered Partner of the United States of America Vietnam War 50th Anniversary Commemoration, and will be hosting events for Vietnam veterans and their families over the next three years.
The commemoration was authorized by Congress, established under the Secretary of Defense and launched by President Barack Obama. It began with the presidential inaugural event at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (the Wall) in Washington, D.C., on Memorial Day 2012, and concludes on Veterans Day 2025, by presidential proclamation.
The commemoration honors all United States veterans who served on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces at any time between Nov. 1, 1955, and May 15, 1975, regardless of location. This commemoration program makes no distinction between veterans who served in-country, in-theater or who were stationed elsewhere during the Vietnam War period. Nov. 1, 1955, was selected to coincide with the official designation of Military Assistance Advisory Group-Vietnam (MAAG-V), and May 15, 1975, marks the end of the battle precipitated by the seizure of SS Mayaguez. All who served during this defined period of time are considered Vietnam veterans.
As a Commemorative Partner, Post 594 has committed to conducting two events or activities each year for the next three-year period with the focus being on one or more of these program objectives:
•To thank and honor veterans of the Vietnam War, including personnel who were held as prisoners of war or listed as missing in action, for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States and to thank and honor the families of these veterans.
•To highlight the service of the Armed Forces during the Vietnam War, and the contributions of federal agencies and governmental and non-governmental organizations that served with, or in support of, the Armed Forces.
•To pay tribute to the contributions made on the homefront by the people of the United States during the Vietnam War.
•To highlight the advances in technology, science and medicine related to military research conducted during the Vietnam War.
•To recognize the contributions and sacrifices made by the allies of the United States during the Vietnam War.
The commemoration has also established a special recognition program to honor the unique service and sacrifice of four categories of veterans and their families. Certificates of Honor are available for Post 594 to present, along with accompanying lapel pins for the following groups:
•Former, living American military POWs from the Vietnam War as listed by the Department of Defense
•Immediate family members (parents, spouse, siblings and children) of American military personnel listed as missing and unaccounted for from the Vietnam War by the Department of Defense
•Immediate family members (parents, spouse, siblings and children) of a veteran who is listed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., and who is not listed as missing or unaccounted for by the Department of Defense.
•Surviving spouse, at time of death, of a veteran who served on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces at any time during the period Nov. 1, 1955 – May 15, 1975, regardless of location of service.
Post members and Vietnam veterans Frank Caldwell, Frank Russomanno, Wayne Beierman and John Flynn are the committee members who will coordinate Post 594’s activities in support of this partnership.
The post plans to hold an inaugural event at the Eagan Community Center in September 2018 and another one at the MN Veterans Home - Hastings in October 2018.