FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 29, 2019
United Mine Workers of America, International Union President Cecil E. Roberts encourages the membership of the UMWA and all Americans to take time to honor the women and men who served their country in the Vietnam War.
“From November 1, 1955 until April 30, 1975 over 2.7 million young men and women left their homes and this Country to serve in the Vietnam War. In that time, 58,202 of these brave Americans paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to our Nation. While the names of each can be seen on the granite wall in Washington, DC, it does not tell the story of the lives they lived, the people they loved or the men and women they may have become. They were husbands and fathers, wives and mothers, uncles, aunts, sisters and brothers, they were the children and young adults of proud parents who dreamed of them changing the world one day. Today they are remembered as the soldier, the sailor, the marine, the airman and nurse who left their home to protect ours.”
“Today there are fewer than 850,000 surviving Vietnam Veterans. That is less than one-third of the total number who served. Unfortunately, with the aging of the individuals, the effects of Agent Orange exposure and the physical and emotional trauma these veterans have experienced they suffer a mortality rate far greater than the general public. With an estimated 390 Vietnam Veterans passing each day there will be few, if any alive in just 10 years.”
“March 29, 2019 is designated as National Vietnam Veterans Memorial Day with ceremonies to be held across the Country. March 30, 2019 is designated as West Virginia Vietnam Veterans Memorial Day, a ceremony is scheduled at the State Capitol in Charleston. I would ask everyone who is able to make every effort to attend one of the services.”
“As a Vietnam Veteran myself, I know first-hand the pride and honor of serving my Country in that war and the unrest and heartache that Vietnam Veterans experienced upon their return home. The men and women, who sacrificed so much to defend the principles of our Nation during the Vietnam War, never got a parade or a formal welcoming home ceremony. They were not hailed as heroes for serving in southeast Asia, as other returning Military Veterans were in past wars. But it is never too late to honor their service. It is never too late to welcome them home. And it is certainly never too late to show respect to these Veterans as a citizen of a grateful Nation. I would encourage everyone to attend a Vietnam Veterans Day service in their community.”
President Roberts will be at the Capitol in Charleston, West Virginia on March 30, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. to offer his remarks in honor those who served in the Vietnam War.