THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE VIETNAM WAR INSPIRES PERSONAL MESSAGES OF APPRECIATION FOR THE SACRIFICES MADE BY NEW JERSEY’S VIETNAM VETERANS10
Huey Plaza paver donations raise funds for the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation.
This spring a 1964 UH1-D Huey Helicopter was dedicated and found its final landing place in front of the Vietnam Era Museum & Educational Center. The Huey was fully restored by a group of veteran volunteers, many of them Vietnam Era helicopter pilots and maintenance technicians. The New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation (NJVVMF) invites individuals, organizations and businesses to become a part of the newly constructed Huey Plaza by purchasing a paving stone. These paving stones will be engraved with personal messages of support and are a unique way to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War.
For a $350 donation, a personal message can be engraved on one of the pavers within the Plaza. Each personal message is a maximum of 3 lines with 14 characters per line. Proceeds from paver sales will support programming at the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial and Vietnam Era Museum & Educational Center. For more information, call (732) 335-0033 or visit www.njvvmf.org to download a paver form.
“As we continue To Remember, To Heal and To Honor those New Jerseyans who served in the Vietnam War, we have been touched by the support and messages received during our fundraiser,” said Bill Linderman, Executive Director of the NJVVMF. “The Huey helicopter is the iconic symbol of the Vietnam War and family and friends recognize the Huey Plaza as an ideal venue to preserve the memory of their loved ones. Many visitors including thousands of school children from across NJ, NY and PA will visit the exhibit and read the messages, educating future generations on the sacrifices made by our Vietnam Veterans.”
Dennis Beauregard, New Jersey State President of the Vietnam Veterans of America, has played a pivotal role in supporting fundraising efforts for Operation Huey Paver. He has assisted the NJVVMF since its founding and the creation of the Memorial and Vietnam Era Museum & Educational Center. Bill Linderman, Executive Director of the NJVVMF, recognizes the importance of working with partners like the VVA and others to leave a lasting legacy for New Jersey’s Vietnam Veterans.
“My relationship with the Huey began in 1968 when I was an Infantry soldier in the US Army,9th Division 3/39th Infantry, Bravo company. I was evacuated from the Mekong Delta and flown by to the 3rd field hospital on Feb 2,1968,” says Dennis. “At the Huey Plaza’s Dedication Ceremony on May 7, 2014, among hundreds of fellow Vietnam Veterans, I was brought back by the sounds of the Huey as its pitch is unmistakable.”
“This Huey was the candle on our two layers of cake. First we created the Memorial, then the Museum & Educational Center and now we have the Huey Plaza,” says Dennis. “Unfortunately, many students do not learn about our experiences and the Vietnam War in their schools. I highly recommend they make their way to Holmdel for a tour of the Memorial and Museum, where the Huey is perched high at its entrance. The paver donations will be flames on our cake, making it possible to continue our educational programming and building renovations and expansion.”
Although the Huey will never actually be able to fly again, it comes to life with simulated sounds of its spinning rotor blades at the entrance to the Vietnam Era Museum & Educational Center. Visit the Huey daily and during free Vietnam Veteran led tours held on the first Saturday of each month at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. and by appointment.
About New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation
The New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation offers a meaningful and engaging experience that recognizes the sacrifice, courage and valor of Vietnam Veterans and encourages and fosters a thorough understanding of the Vietnam Era including the political, historical, social, cultural and military aspects, which affected the United States, and especially New Jersey. To support the Foundation, visit www.njvvmf.org.