Cemetery to bless and bury Vietnam mementoes

WHITTIER - Mementos left by people who visited the traveling replica of the Vietnam Wall at Rose Hills will be blessed and buried in the cemetery's Rose Garden this Saturday at 2:30 p.m.The items have been inventoried and placed in a burial vault emblazoned with military seals representing the five branches of service. The interment site will provide people a permanent place to remember, reflect and heal, cemetery officials said. The memorial vault, as it's called, contains nearly 1,000 items including flowers, letters, photos, uniforms and flags. The Vietnam Wall is eight feet high and 240 feet long and is a 3/4 replica of the Wall in Washington, D.C. Its black, reflective surface is inscribed with the names of more than 58,000 servicemen and women who died or are missing in Vietnam. "During the weeklong event in late March, words could not describe the emotions evoked by a hand reaching out to gently touch the name of a fallen friend, brother or sister; by the personal remembrances left for a lost loved one at the foot of the Wall; by a lone individual standing in silent vigil; or by a lasting, healing embrace, one veteran to another," said Patrick Monroe, president of Rose Hills. "The mementoes inside the vault are representations of this healing, grief and love. They're not just items."

********** Published: April 19, 2012 - Volume 11 - Issue 01