The Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C.
The Korean War Memorial in Washington D.C. is an amazing tribute to the men and woman of the U.S. Armed Forces that served in the Korean Conflict. Cooper-Lecky Architects facilitated the design and President George H. W. Bush conducted the groundbreaking for the Memorial on June 14, 1992. The memorial was completed and dedicated on July 27, 1995, the 42nd anniversary of the armistice. President Bill Clinton and Kim Young Sam (President of the Republic of Korea) dedicated the memorial to the men and woman who served in the Korean conflict.
The memorial has a triangle design intersecting a circle. There are 19 stainless steel statues designed by Frank Gaylord.* All the figures represent the branches of the U.S. Armed Forces. Fourteen of the figures are U.S. Army, three are from the U.S. Marine Corps, one is a U.S. Navy Corpsman, and the last figure is a member of the U.S. Air Force.
U.S. Air Force figure.
U.S. Marine. You can tell the difference by the boots the figures are wearing.
I first visited the memorial in 1997 and it left a profound influence on me. It is my favorite memorial in D.C. The design allows the visitor to feel embedded with the soldiers and it feels like you are there with them. Throughout the year the seasons may change, but the figures stay the same. They keep patrolling, they keep moving, they keep vigilant, they keep each other safe. It’s moving.
Sitting under the trees near the Pool of Remembrance is calming and it allows veterans who may have felt pain and hurt seeing the soldiers on patrol to sit and reflect peacefully. It was a powerful and moving experience for me.
The memorial also has a 164 foot long black granite wall with photos of servicemen that were sandblasted into the granite. Several veterans have been surprised to see their faces on the wall. I am sure this has caused many veterans to touch the wall and reach back to the past and remember the friends that were lost.
The Korean Conflict is also known as the forgotten war. I can somewhat agree to this description. Vietnam overshadowed the Korean Conflict. However, for me it is a war my father, Samuel Garza Sr. served in. Growing up it was never discussed. My father never boasted of combat or of war glory. He simply served his country and his experience is his own.
My father Samuel Garza Sr. is on the far left. This post is dedicated to him and to all veterans of the Korean Conflict.
* Source from Wikipedia
For more information, please visit:http://www.nps.gov/kowa/index.htm
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