For 32 years, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial has honored 58,300 Americans who died in that conflict with simple solemnity — names engraved into a black granite wall.
Every name, however, had a face, and the organization that built the wall wants them remembered, too.
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund is raising money to build an educational center near the Washington, D.C., memorial that will include photos of the slain. In the meantime, it has established an online “Wall of Faces” to honor them pictorially, and has collected thousands of photos since 2009. The site (vvmf.org/Wall-of-Faces/) also provides other basic information about each deceased veteran and provides for friends and loved ones to post remembrances.
There are photos for many of them, but VVMF is searching for photos for the others, including 51 from the Baton Rouge area.
Photos are being sought for those from the following area parishes: East Baton Rouge — Thomas D. Babin Jr., Patrick D. Ballew, Joseph G. Catoir Jr., Emile Cole, Donald J. Cook, Johnny L. Evans, Theodore A. Faulk, William L. Glasper, Willie Grant Jr., Herman L. Grayson, Alvin Grimes, Carroll G. Hogeman, Roy W. Howard, Charlie E. Kemp, Deryl R. Kirkwood, Leroy J. Kling, William J. Morgan, Larry Nelson, Daniel J. Noble, Joseph C. Reid, George J. Singleton, Aaron C. Smith, Woodrow W. Snyder Jr., Rudolph Stevens, Virgil G. Stewart, Wallace A. Stockstill Jr., Lonnie J. Tullier, Freddie Turner and Walter L. Wells, Baton Rouge; Anthony L. Moore and Eugene Morris Jr., Pride.
West Baton Rouge — James Brown Jr., Port Allen.
Ascension — David P. Achord, Joseph P. Brignac, Isaac A. Diez Jr. and Eddie L. Landry, Gonzales; Edmund Furman, Victor Johnson Jr., Charles A. McKinney and Armond J. Stein Jr., Donaldsonville.
Livingston — Charles B. Dedon, Livingston.
Iberville — Robert Brown, Donald W. Hall, David M. Kaufman, Clarence H. Lewis, Percy I. Pugh and Ernest Tatney Jr., Plaquemine.
East Feliciana — Willie Jackson, Clinton; Charlie B. Thomas, Ethel.
West Feliciana — Henry Jones Jr., Bains.
Pointe Coupee — Anthony J. Henderson, Morganza.
VVMF also encourages photos to be submitted even if it already has at least one of the veteran, said VVMF volunteer Dave Hine, of Greenfield, Indiana.
“I always tell people that each photo tells a small story about those we lost,” he said. “We not only need to remember them for their ultimate sacrifice, but for their entire life prior to their death.”
Information about submitting photos can be found at vvmf.org/faces-never-forgotten.