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More memorials and museums listed under Military Places

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A forum for discussion of all things related to military reunions and vendors who support them.

Planners ask questions and others answer with the advice of those who have "been there." There are insights about what works and what doesn't, what locations and/or vendors have gone out of their way to work with groups such as ours and what locations/vendors have NOT been good to work with. To join the group, go to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/VMRP/ and click on "JOIN THIS GROUP."

 

Memorials

Barking Beagles
Long without a memorial recognizing its contribution to the war effort, the American Beagle Squadron Alumni created a Memorial Wall featuring bronze plaques and renderings of a Spitfire and Mustang as well as a summary of the Squadrons WWII accomplishments. About $1,500 was raised for the wall through donations. A dedication ceremony was held at the wall during the 52nd Fighter Group Reunion, September 21-23, 2000 in Dayton, Ohio.

Lynchburg - National D-Day Memorial
The National D-Day Memorial opened on June 6, 2001 to honor the valor, fidelity and sacrifices of the Allied Forces on D-Day, June 6, 1944.

The first wave of battle at Normandy – with the most casualties – was led by the Army's 29th Division, made up mostly of Virginians. Virginia and Bedford are forever linked with D-Day as a symbol of America's sacrifice. The Virginia National Guard, the 116th Infantry Regiment of the 29th Division, was one of the two first assault regiments on Omaha Beach, scene of the bloodiest fighting on D-Day.

In 1996, the City of Bedford was selected by Congress as the official site of the nation’s memorial to the Allied Forces involved in the D-Day invasion. One of the reasons was because the city (with a 1944 population of 3,200) had the highest per capita losses of any community in America during the landings on the Normandy coastline.

The Memorial’s 88-acre site, with the Blue Ridge Mountains as a backdrop, featured sculptural tributes to all service branches, Victory Plaza and the massive overlord arch, ringed by the flags of the Allied Expeditionary Forces.

The Lynchburg Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau offers military reunion planners a "War & Peace" package that includes admission to the National D-Day Memorial, a visit to Appomattox Court House National Historical Park (where the nation reunited following the War Between the States) and a tour of one of Lynchburg's five historic districts.

For a complete Reunion Planner package contact Lynchburg Regional CVB at 800-732-5821; lmeriwether@lynchburgchamber.com.

Freedom preserved and celebrated
The Freedom Museum held the Third Annual Festival of Freedom August 10-12, 2001 at the Manassas (VA) Regional Airport. The festival welcomed heroes from 20th century conflicts. Heroes include veterans of WWII, Korea, Vietnam and Operation Desert Storm.
The festival includes more than 25 vintage aircraft, many tanks and armored vehicles, WWII re-enactors, contemporary military and experimental civilian aircraft, period music, displays and patriotic performances. It was a weekend immersed in American history.

Many previous festival favorites returned and new features debuted. Among the new features were a JU-52 Tri-Motor German Transport. Other aircraft are P-51 Mustang, TBM Avenger, B-25 Mitchell bomber, UC-78 Bobcat, SNJ Trainer, Harvard Mark 2 Trainer.

The Freedom Museum was founded in 1999 by a group of veterans to honor contributions to world peace and freedom of the Armed Forces and civilian leaders. Contact The Freedom Museum, 10400 Terminal Road, Manassas VA 20110; 877-393-0660; 703-393-0660; www.freedommuseum.org.

Where were you in January 1944?
Members of surviving families of the crew of the B24 Liberator shot down in the Ardennes region of Belgium in January 1944 are sought for a reunion and memorial dedication. The memorial will be at the crash site near the village of Wibrin in Belgium. The reunion will bring together survivors or surviving family members of the crew. Arrangements, location and design of the memorial are being made in Belgium. The 44th BG Veterans Association will have a reunion tour group for this and other war memorials and sites. Contact Forrest S. Clark, 44th Bomb Group; 863-427-0371; b24vet@aol.com.

POW artifacts sought
The National Prisoner of War Museum, located at Andersonville National Historic Site, Andersonville, Georgia, is seeking artifact donations. The museum is the only unit of the National Park Service dedicated solely to the commemoration of POWs from all time periods in US history. Items that have a direct relationship to the POW experience are of special interest. This includes dog tags, forks and knives, letters and telegrams and items POWs actually used to survive their incarceration. Anyone with such POW related items is encouraged to contact Eric Reinert, Museum Technician, Box 800, Andersonville GA 31711. from the Ex-POW Bulletin

Contribute to history
The National D-Day Museum is now seeking artifacts from Pacific invasions. Paula Ussery, Museum Curator, says the museum is looking for artifacts with interpretative stories and things that spotlight the human experience of the millions of men, women and children who participated in the Pacific and on the home front.

Of particular interest are American uniforms and personal equipment worn or used in combat and Japanese items such as swords picked up on beaches. The museum has many wonderful items, but needs more especially from areas like Tarawa, Peleiu and Guadalcanal. Contact Paula Ussery at 504-527-6012, ext. 234. from The National D-Day Museum Newsletter

Let someone else do the driving! For reunion touring you may want to offer a comfortable motorcoach so everyone can ride together in comfort.



Rosie gets her dues

With the dedication of the Rosie the Riveter Memorial in Richmond, Virginia, World War II women workers are getting the recognition they deserve. The memorial is 441 feet, the same length as Liberty ships women helped build and includes a walk with a timeline of facts and memories from female workers.

The memorial brought back memories for Phyllis Gould, a welder on the San Francisco Bay. When Gould's husband and friends joined the ship-building effort, she wanted to help too. She met opposition and was told "no women and no blacks." She cried the third time she was turned down but as she left, ran into a man who helped her get a job.

The job was rough, but Gould performed well and made sure she looked good while doing it. Behind her mask, her lips were lipsticked and her hair tied in a kerchief. She always made sure her bandanna matched the color of the shirt collar poking from beneath her sweats.
Marian Sousa, Gould's sister, was a draftsman in the war. About the memorial, she said "we never expected to be recognized. Everybody worked. They did what they could."

Sousa had an easier time entering the war effort later because female workers were commonplace by then. She took a crash course in drafting at The University of California Berkeley in 1943 at just 17. Then, got a job when her mother lied for her.

Sousa's job was to correct blueprints. "I remember just endless, endless papers of erasing two bunks and making them three bunks." She said the people she worked with were great. "I was expecting my daughter and those men gave me a surprise baby shower."

Recognition for all of "Rosie's" war efforts was greatly overdue.
from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Vietnam Memorial Top Draw
Among the most visited tourist attractions in the nation's capital is the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. More than 2.5 million people pass the black granite walls bearing the names of the 58,220 men and women killed while serving with the US Armed Forces in Vietnam.

Tourists can also visit the Vietnam Women's Memorial, raised in 1993 to honor the nearly 8,000 American women on active duty during the war.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is free and open to the public 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Contact the Vietnam Memorial Fund, 1023 Fifteenth St NW, 2nd floor, Washington DC 20005-2602; 202-393-0090; www.vvmf.org.

Clarifying memorials
Some people mistakenly associate the Normandy Foundation, a private organization, with the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC), sponsor of the World War II Memorial. There is no connection between the two and plans for the World War II Memorial continue to develop and grow. ABMC is the Executive Branch's agency, which maintains 24 permanent US military cemeteries abroad and 22 memorials in 15 countries. Contact WWII Memorial, Courthouse Plaza II, Ste 501, 2300 Clarendon Blvd, Arlington VA 22201; 701-696-5127.

Military Reunion Planner Conferences & FAM Tours

Your Military Reunion connection

Your Military Reunion Connection, otherwise known as ‘YMRC’, is a networking and support organization of military reunion groups and the organizations that serve them.
YMRC seminars and FAM tours are offered nationwide. Our services encompass education, information, and networking. Whether you are a new or seasoned planner, YMRC is your resource for planning your next military reunion. We will put you in contact with key people at whichever destination you are considering for your next reunion and provide scheduled face-to-face appointments with exhibitors in a marketplace format.
Oct 17-20, 2013 Virginia Beach, VA
Oct 23-26, 2013 Jacksonville, FL
Feb 9-14, 2014 Myrtle Beach, SC
Feb 20-23, 2014 Fort Walton Beach/Destin, FL
Mar 23-26, 2014 San Diego, CA
May 4-7, 2014 San Antonio, TX
May 9-12, 2014 Colorado Springs, CO
Jul 27-30, 2014 Nashville TN
Nov 9-12, 2014 Charleston SC
For more information and to register go to www.yourmilitaryreunions.com
Questions? Email us at ymrcusa@gmail.com or call 417-593-4234


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