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Wall that Heals offers a chance to remember those who were lost in the Vietnam war

The Wall that Heals
Austin Schindler
/
WAOW Television
The Wall that Heals

A traveling memorial that's dedicated to the sacrifices made by Vietnam veterans found a new temporary home in Rhinelander at Nicolet College.

A name-for-name copy of the Vietnam veterans memorial in Washington D.C. made at three-fourths the size so they could take it to places veterans can easily access.

"I come here to see a guy that I took bow hunting the day before he shipped out, and he never came home," said Jim Hubatch, a Korean veteran.

58,000 U.S. Service Members were killed in the Vietnam war, and the ones that survived are slowing down which means a visit to Washington D.C. isn't always feasible.

That's why Jim Hubatch came out to see The Wall That Heals, and visit an old friend.

"It was a month or so, and we got report that he got killed (in Vietnam)," said Hubatch.

He took the Honor Flight years ago, but never got to see the Vietnam wall, until Friday.

"I guess I just missed it, and it always bothered me," said Hubatch. "Now when this comes, I had to come see it. I just had too."

His friend's name is Larry Leindecker, one of many veterans the community came to see.

That's exactly what the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund set out to do.

"It's part of our mission to bring the traveling wall, The Wall That Heals, to communities around the nation to bring just what it says. That healing," said Elaine Koontz, a site manager for The Wall That Heals.

Koontz's father was stationed in Germany at the time of the war, but she says the horrors in Vietnam bled into those that were stationed elsewhere.

"I haven't been able to talk to my dad very much about his service, and being in this position to carry and travel with The Wall That Heals, has actually allowed him to open up with those stories and those experiences he had," said Koontz.

The visit of the Wall that Heals to Rhinelander concluded on Sunday

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