Remembering killed Vietnam veterans

Vietnam Veterans who died in the service of their country will be remembered at a poignant commemoration in February as part of the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan and the Vietnam War.

 

At 12 noon on 21 February 2016 the Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia – Victorian Branch (VVAA Victorian Branch) will coordinate State-wide, simultaneous vigils at the gravesites of Vietnam Veterans buried in Victoria.

 

Acting Minister for Veterans Philip Dalidakis and President of the VVAA Victorian Branch Bob Elworthy said

One hundred Vietnam veterans participated directly in the vigils, as organisers or presenters, during a visit to the Springvale War Cemetery on Wednesday.

 

Almost 60,000 Australians including 10,500 Victorians served in the Vietnam War and 521 Australians did not return. 98 Australian veterans who died during active service in Vietnam are buried at gravesites throughout Victoria.

 

The Victorian Government has committed $1 million over two years to support the VVAA Victorian Branch in developing a thoughtful program of commemorative and educational events for 2016.

 

Gravesite vigils will take place to encourage the community to better understand and reflect on the Vietnam War – Australia’s longest military engagement of the 20th century.

 

Other initiatives to commemorate the anniversary include a Vietnam War History Competition for Victorian students, and a $250,000 upgrade of the National Vietnam Veterans Museum at Phillip Island.

 

For more information about the commemorative and educational activities planned for the 50th Anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan see www.vic.gov.au/victoriaremembers/vietnam or www.vvaavic.org.au.

 

6 January 2016.