By Emily Gallagher
Times West Virginian
The West Virginia State Council of Vietnam Veterans will continue to have their Vietnam Veterans Mobile Wall travel the state.
Marion County Delegates Mike Caputo, Linda Longstreth and Tim Manchin have secured a $3,000 grant that provides the wall honoring more than 700 West Virginia Vietnam veterans to be maintained.
The grant went through the Community Participation Grant process.
“That was applied for about a year ago,” Caputo said. “They needed some money to finance that project and it came to Tim, Linda and me, and we certainly thought that it would be well served by the community and certainly well deserved by the organization.”
Caputo, who serves as House majority whip, said having the wall travel the state gives residents a chance to see a monument honoring veterans without having to travel to Washington D.C.
“A lot of folks can’t get to Washington D.C. to see the (Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall),” he said. “For those who can’t, this is a pretty moving experience.”
When Caputo saw the wall for the first time, he said it was very moving.
“It really sends cold chills up your spine,” he said. “It’s a very moving monument toward heroes of this country.”
The mobile wall was dedicated in Fairmont this past summer.
In a recent press release, Manchin said Marion County’s delegation was honored to have the mobile wall dedicated in Fairmont.
“Our community has been very supportive of the work of the State Council of Vietnam Veterans, and I know they will appreciate that state dollars are being contributed to educate West Virginians about the heroes who gave their lives in the Vietnam War,” he said.
Longstreth, who is vice chair of the House of Delegates Committee on Veterans Affairs, said the committee has followed the creation of the mobile wall very closely.
“I know legislators will look forward to hearing an update on the mobile wall’s travels throughout the state,” she said. “I am extremely proud that it is based in Marion County.”
With the funding, the Vietnam Veterans Mobile Wall will be able to travel throughout the state’s 55 counties.
Email Emily Gallagher at email@example.com or follow her on Twitter @EGallagherTWV.