CHICAGO (CBS) — There are only two places in the United States where the name of every soldier killed in Vietnam is listed publically. One of the them is right here in Chicago and now it has a new home.
CBS 2’s Marissa Bailey explains what went into resurrecting this memorial and why so many more people will now see it.
Alice Perkins has been a fixture at the Harold Washington Library for 28 years, but it was a new fixture on the third floor that brought her to tears Monday morning.
“It looks like a chandelier,” she said. “It’s beautiful.”
It’s official name is “Above and Beyond,” honoring the soldiers who died in the Vietnam War: a single dog tag for every soul, 58,307 to be exact.
The exhibit was created in 2001 and on display at the National Veteran’s Museum in the South Loop until they lost funding.
It sat in boxes for four years until this week where it officially opened in its new home in the library.
“We wanted it to be prominently displayed, a place where people can see it from lots of different angles,” said Brendan Foster, executive director of the National Veterans Museum. “As we walked through the building we all had this aha that this was the place for it.”
Names are added to the memorial every year as the Department of Defense discovers new identities.
“Above and Beyond” will stay at the Harold Washington Library for at least four years. Admission to the library is free.
The only other place where every Vietnam veteran is seen by name is the Vietnam Wall in Washington, D.C.