Cindy Gatziolis 312.744.0573
Mary May 312.744.0576
The City of Chicago will once again honor all veterans with a commemorative ceremony to be held on Saturday, November 10 at 10 a.m. at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Plaza, along Chicago’s Riverwalk between State and Wabash. The ceremony site has been chosen in accordance with President Barack Obama proclaiming this the Commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War.
The United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration is the official title given to the program in the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act. It states that the Secretary of Defense will coordinate, support and facilitate other programs and activities of the federal government, state and local governments and other organizations in commemorations of the Vietnam War.
The brief ceremony will include brief remarks and a presentation to the City of Chicago by Major General James T. Jackson (Retired). The Major General will present the United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration Flag to the City.
Major General Jackson completed a successful 32 year military career in 2003 that included increasing levels of responsibility in diverse and complex organizations ranging in size from 30 to 17,000 personnel. Jackson has held various leadership positions within the U.S. Army with operational experience in strategic planning, team building, financial management, communications, risk management, and security operations.
The City of Chicago and the Chicago Department of Transportation dedicated Chicago’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial in a Veterans Day ceremony held in 2005. The plaza and memorial feature a water wall, a list of Illinois KIA, a timeline and service emblems of the Armed Forces and support organizations.
One of those support organizations, the USO, will provide coffee and doughnuts to those attending.
Veterans Day is the one day set aside to thank and honor living veterans who served honorably in the military in wartime or peacetime. Veterans Day is honored on November 11 each day as it marks the Armistice between the Allied Forces and Germany went into effect at the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” in 1918, ending World War I.
Alderman James Balcer of the 11th Ward, a decorated Vietnam veteran, emcees the program which will culminate in a wreath laying ceremony at the Memorial Wall, followed by a 21-gun salute, Taps and the Armed Forces Medley.