(Note from Vicki – There is just one article in our current Reference Copy of WSGS Wisconsin State Genealogical Society Newsletter; there are many other interesting articles about Wisconsin history.)
Thanks to incredible volunteers throughout the state, and our friends at the Wisconsin Newspaper Association, all 1,161 photos from the official Department of Defense list have been found!
We are proud to have been a part of this effort since 2012. Now we need your help to find the few remaining photos that make up the Wisconsinites listed on The Highground, Wisconsin’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial Park*.
Why are there two different lists? When we learned that The Highground list includes the names of 1,244 Wisconsinites we decided to work with both lists to try and provide the most inclusive and documented recognition for Wisconsinites lost in the war that we could. Most of The Highground veterans are on The Wall in D.C. but are officially listed by the Department of Defense as coming from neighboring states like Minnesota, Illinois and Iowa, because they were drafted or recruited away from their homes in Wisconsin.
Help us find The Highground photos and make sure every Wisconsinite is honored. You can help put a face to these names and honor those who lost their lives by joining the effort to collect and preserve photographs of every service member whose name appears on the Wall and The Highground. We’ll be posting the names of the additional names that we are seeking photos for soon.
It’s easy to volunteer. If you’d like to volunteer to find a photo – or more than one – please start by contacting Ellen Clark, our Green Bay regional manager. Ellen is keeping a master list — supplied by the VVMF — of names that still do not have photos associated with them. When you contact her, she can help you find the names that need a photos in your area of the state and collect your information to keep a record of who is searching for which photos. This will reduce potential confusion and a duplication of volunteer efforts.
Need help getting started? The VVMF is looking for any kind of photo to help bring the story of those listed on the Wall to life. Official military photos, yearbook photos, family photos and personal remembrences are all welcome. Bryce Kelley, a former teacher who helped find hundreds of photos, developed a quick guide that you can download here.
WPR will continue to promote the effort through statewide broadcasts, online outreach and community engagement activities until photos have been found for each Wisconsinite on The Wall and The Highground memorial.
*The official U.S. Department of Defense and Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund record of Wisconsinites listed on the Wall is 1,161. The Highground, a Vietnam veterans memorial park based in Neillsville, WI, includes 1,244 Wisconsinites. We are working with both lists to try and provide the most inclusive and documented recognition that we can.
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