September 05, 2014

Media Advisory – Traveling Vietnam Wall

Multiple story opportunities will be available to reporters, photographers and news crews next week when SIU Carbondale hosts the Traveling Vietnam Wall and related activities.

The traveling wall, an 80 percent-sized replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., will arrive via U.S. Highway 51 at approximately 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 10. Volunteers will erect the lightweight aluminum panels, which include all 58,300 names that appear on the wall in Washington, beginning at 8 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 11, on the practice football field south of Saluki Stadium. Organizers hope to have the wall open to the public by 1 p.m. It will be open 24 hours a day until the exhibit closes on Sunday, Sept. 14.

The opening ceremony is set for 6:30 p.m. on Sept. 11 with keynote speaker Major General (ret.) Randal E. Thomas, chair of the SIU Board of Trustees. Thomas received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star for valor for his 1968-69 combat service in Vietnam. From 2003 to 2007, he served as the adjutant general of Illinois, the highest National Guard post in the state. 

Among the many related activities will be the football Salukis’ annual military appreciation game against Southeast Missouri State on Sept. 13. The closing ceremony for the wall is set for 1:30 p.m. on Sept. 14, and the exhibit will close at 3 p.m. 

For more information, contact Mark “Skip” Cosgrove, chair of the planning committee and senior vice commandant and trustee of Shawnee Detachment 812 of the Marine Corps Reserve, at 618-967-9462, or via email at .

In preparation for the arrival of the wall, students from the College of Engineering’s Leadership Development Program will be doing survey work on the practice football field beginning at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 6. Members of the media can speak with Ian Wiser, a senior in civil engineering, on site.