The VVA Veteran® Online

July/August 2015

Photos: Bill Shugarts

“Vietnam Veterans & Honor Flight”


As the forty-four Vietnam War veterans of the Honor Flight Nevada exited their bus and prepared to march to The Wall in Washington, D.C., on June 20, the brilliant sunshine, high temperature, and high humidity immediately ignited memories of their tours in Vietnam.

Honor Flight Nevada flew the veterans and their escorts from Reno, Nevada, to Washington for a weekend of memorial visits and to witness the Marine Barracks Twilight Tattoo. Jon Yuspa, the founder and chair of Honor Flight Nevada, who has hosted several trips for World War II and Korean War veterans, decided that it was time to honor Vietnam War veterans. 

Carson City Chapter 388 and Reno Chapter 989 provided logistical and fundraising support for the trip. The trip was free for the veterans. The Dean K. Phillips Memorial Chapter 227 of Northern Virginia hosted the visit to The Wall; Ben Buckley coordinated the bus parking reservation and the wreath laying, and Bill Shugarts took photographs.

JPhotos: Bill Shugartsim Knotts, chief executive officer of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, and Bruce Waxman, president of Chapter 227, gave brief welcomes. Knotts said he hoped that this would not be the last Honor Flight for Vietnam War veterans to The Wall. Waxman reminded the veterans to continue fulfilling VVA’s founding principle, “Never Again Will One Generation of Veterans Abandon Another.” Buckley’s official welcome included a history of The Wall. After two chaplains spoke, an honor guard delivered the wreath to The Wall’s apex. 

Then the group approached The Wall to visit the friends whose names are etched on it. Chapter 227 members Dan Kirby, Paul Stancliff, Cyndy Stancliff, and Bill Shugarts, who are National Park Service volunteers, assisted in locating names on The Wall and making rubbings.

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