Elmhurst Park

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Queens Vietnam Veterans Memorial

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  • Two semi-circular granite walls inscribed with honor roll of 371 names of those who died, historical timeline, bamboo motif, memorial name, and military crests, surrounding a sunken seating area and plaza inscribed with a map.
  • Two semi-circular granite walls inscribed with honor roll of 371 names of those who died, historical timeline, bamboo motif, memorial name, and military crests, surrounding a sunken seating area and plaza inscribed with a map.
  • Two semi-circular granite walls inscribed with honor roll of 371 names of those who died, historical timeline, bamboo motif, memorial name, and military crests, surrounding a sunken seating area and plaza inscribed with a map.
  • Architect: Denise Mattes and Frank Varro
  • Description: Two semi-circular granite walls inscribed with honor roll of 371 names of those who died, historical timeline, bamboo motif, memorial name, and military crests, surrounding a sunken seating area and plaza inscribed with a map.
  • Materials: Barre Grey Granite
  • Dimensions: Title and Bamboo Wall L: 36’ x W: 1’ x H: 4’6" ; Historic Wall and Names: L: 42’ x W: 1’ x H: 4’6"
  • Dedicated: December 20, 2019
  • Fabricator: Sprung Monuments, Corinthian Cast Stone Inc.,Barre Granite Association Inc.
  • Donor: Borough President Melinda Katz (full amount)
  • Inscription: MAY 7, 1954: COMMUNIST VIETNAMESE INDEPENDENCE FIGHTERS DEFEAT FRENCH FORCES AT THE / BATTLE OF ?I?N BIÊN PH?. AT THE GENEVA CONFERENCE, IT IS DECIDED TO DIVIDE VIETNAM AT THE / 17TH PARALLEL WITH ELECTIONS PLANNED FOR 1956 TO DETERMINE THE FATE OF THE COUNTRY; THE / ELECTIONS ARE NEVER HELD. NGÔ ?ÌNH DI?M DECLARES HIMSELF PRESIDENT OF THE NEWLY / ESTABLISHED REPUBLIC OF VIETNAM IN THE SOUTH WHILE THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF VIETNAM IN / THE NORTH REMAINS A SEPARATE STATE UNDER H? CHÍ MINH. PRESIDENT DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER / COMMITS THE UNITED STATES TO MAINTAIN SOUTH VIETNAM'S INDEPENDENCE UNDER DI?M. //

    UNDER EISENHOWER, THE U.S. MILITARY REPLACES FRANCE AS THE PROTECTOR OF THE DEMOCRATIC / SOUTH VIETNAM. ON JULY 8, 1959, THE FIRST U.S. SERVICEMEN ARE KILLED IN COMBAT AT BIÊN HÒA / BY THE COMMUNIST SOUTH VIETNAMESE NATIONAL LIBERATION FRONT, BETTER KNOWN AS THE VIET / CONG. BY YEAR'S END THERE ARE 760 U.S. MILITARY PERSONNEL IN SOUTH VIETNAM. //

    JUNE 9, 1961: VICE PRESIDENT LYNDON B. JOHNSON VISITS SOUTHEAST ASIA AND / RECOMMENDS A "STRONG PROGRAM OF ACTION" IN VIETNAM. WHILE PRESIDENT JOHN F. KENNEDY / REFUSES TO DEPLOY AMERICAN COMBAT FORCES, HE INCREASES MILITARY SUPPORT TO THE SOUTH / WITH ADDITIONAL ADVISORS AND HELICOPTERS. BY NOVEMBER 1963, 16,000 U.S. MILITARY / PERSONNEL ARE STATIONED IN VIETNAM. //

    AFTER MONTHS OF CONTINUED INFIGHTING IN SAIGON, PRESIDENT DI?M IS OVERTHROWN AND / ASSASSINATED IN A MILITARY-LED COUP D'ÉTAT ON NOVEMBER 2, 1963. JUST TWENTY DAYS LATER / ON NOVEMBER 22, PRESIDENT KENNEDY IS HIMSELF ASSASSINATED AND VICE PRESIDENT LYNDON / B. JOHNSON IS SWORN IN AS THE 36TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. DI?M'S ASSASSINATION / CREATES A POWER VACUUM IN THE SOUTH AND PROVIDES THE NORTH VIETNAMESE AN / OPPORTUNITY TO INCREASE SUPPORT FOR THE VIET CONG. //

    AUGUST 7, 1964: CONGRESS PASSES THE GULF OF TONKIN RESOLUTION AFTER TWO U.S. / NAVY DESTROYERS REPORT BEING ATTACKED OFF THE COAST OF VIETNAM IN THE GULF OF TONKIN. / ALTHOUGH THE DETAILS OF THE GULF OF TONKIN INCIDENT ARE LATER CALLED INTO QUESTION, THE / COURSE OF AMERICAN INVOLVEMENT IN VIETNAM IS FOREVER CHANGED. PRESIDENT JOHNSON USES / THE RESOLUTION AS A PRETEXT FOR DIRECT AMERICAN MILITARY INVOLVEMENT IN THE EXPANDING / WAR BETWEEN NORTH AND SOUTH VIETNAM. //

    THE U.S. COMMENCES OPERATION ROLLING THUNDER, A MASSIVE BOMBING CAMPAIGN OF THE / NORTH, AND DEPLOYS COMBAT PERSONNEL TO SOUTH VIETNAM. AMERICAN GROUND PERSONNEL / ENGAGE IN OFFENSIVE OPERATIONS TO ACTIVELY LOCATE AND DESTROY ENEMY COMMUNIST FORCES / IN AN INCREASING EFFORT TO WEAKEN ENEMY RESOLVE FOR WAR. AMERICAN GROUND FORCES / NUMBER 23,300 IN 1964, AND BY THE END OF 1965 THE NUMBER RISES TO 184,000. //

    SUPPORT FOR THE WAR IN THE U.S. BEGINS TO WANE AS OPPOSITION RISES IN THE COMING YEARS. / IN APRIL 1967, 100,000 ANTI-WAR PROTESTERS RALLY IN NEW YORK CITY. AT YEAR'S END, THERE / ARE 485,600 U.S. MILITARY PERSONNEL IN SOUTH VIETNAM. //

    ON JANUARY 30, 1968 VIET CONG AND NORTH VIETNAMESE FORCES LAUNCH THE TET OFFENSIVE / AGAINST PROVINCIAL CAPITALS ACROSS SOUTH VIETNAM. INITIALLY CATCHING AMERICAN AND SOUTH / VIETNAMESE FORCES BY SURPRISE, THE COMMUNIST FORCES ARE SOON TURNED BACK WITH HEAVY / LOSSES, PARTICULARLY TO THE VIET CONG. THE TET OFFENSIVE IS CONCURRENTLY A MILITARY DEFEAT / AND A POLITICAL VICTORY FOR THE COMMUNISTS. THE RESULTING SHIFT IN THE AMERICAN PUBLIC'S / SUPPORT FOR THE WAR MOVES THE U.S. TOWARD SEEKING WITHDRAWAL OF AMERICAN MILITARY / PERSONNEL. IN MAY, PRESIDENT JOHNSON ANNOUNCES THAT FORMAL PEACE TALKS WOULD BEGIN. / BY DECEMBER 31, THERE ARE 536,100 U.S. MILITARY PERSONNEL IN SOUTH VIETNAM.//

    JUNE 8, 1969: PRESIDENT RICHARD M. NIXON ANNOUNCES A STRATEGIC SHIFT DEEMED / "VIETNAMIZATION", WHEREBY THE SOUTH VIETNAMESE MILITARY WILL TAKE CONTROL OF THEIR OWN / DEFENSE AS AMERICA STEPS BACK. BY THE END OF 1969, U.S. MILITARY PERSONNEL IN SOUTH / VIETNAM NUMBER 475,200. //

    IN RESPONSE TO NORTH VIETNAM'S 1972 EASTER OFFENSIVE, THE U.S. LAUNCHES OPERATION / LINEBACKER TO HELP THE SOUTH VIETNAMESE STOP THE COMMUNIST ADVANCE. HOWEVER AFTER / MONTHS OF FAILED PEACE TALKS, NORTH VIETNAMESE NEGOTIATORS REFUSE TO CONTINUE. / PRESIDENT NIXON THEN AUTHORIZES OPERATION LINEBACKER II, A MASSIVE CONVENTIONAL / BOMBING CAMPAIGN AGAINST TARGETS IN HANOI AND HAIPHONG. THE BOMBING RAIDS ARE THE / LARGEST HEAVY BOMBER STRIKES FLOWN BY THE U.S. AIR FORCE SINCE WORLD WAR II. THE / ATTACKS CONCLUDE WHEN THE NORTH VIETNAMESE AGREE TO RETURN TO THE PEACE NEGOTIATIONS. //

    JANUARY 15, 1973: PRESIDENT NIXON ANNOUNCES A HALT TO ALL U.S. OFFENSIVE / ACTION. ON MARCH 29, THE WITHDRAWAL OF AMERICAN TROOPS FROM SOUTH VIETNAM AND / THE RELEASE OF 590 U.S. PRISONERS OF WAR ARE COMPLETED. AT THE END OF 1973, TOTAL / U.S. MILITARY PERSONNEL IN VIETNAM NUMBER 50.//

    SPRING 1975: THE NORTH VIETNAMESE TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE CEASEFIRE AND THE / RESIGNATION OF PRESIDENT NIXON TO LAUNCH A NEW INVASION, ATTACKING THE SOUTH / VIETNAMESE CAPITAL OF SAIGON AS THE REMAINING U.S. MILITARY AND DIPLOMATIC / PERSONNEL EVACUATE, ALONG WITH SELECT SOUTH VIETNAMESE CITIZENS. ON APRIL 30, / 1975, THE VIETNAM WAR ENDS AS NORTH VIETNAMESE FORCES SEIZE THE CAPITAL, AND THE / SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF VIETNAM IS BORN. THE VIETNAM WAR COST THE LIVES OF MORE / THAN 58,300 U.S. MILITARY SERVICE MEMBERS. //

    POSTWAR: VETERANS CONTINUED TO / LOSE THEIR LIVES FROM POST-TRAUMATIC / STRESS DISORDER, LINGERING PHYSICAL / INJURIES, AND DISEASES AND CANCERS / LINKED TO AGENT ORANGE EXPOSURE. //

    ONE OF THOSE VETERANS WAS QUEENS / RESIDENT PASTOR "PAT" TORO WHO LOST HIS / LIFE AFTER RETURNING HOME. THE CREATION / OF THE QUEENS VIETNAM VETERANS / MEMORIAL WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN / POSSIBLE WITHOUT HIS ADVOCACY.

    [TEXT IS ACCOMPANIED BY AN HONOR ROLL OF 371 NAMES OF THOSE FROM QUEENS WHO DIED IN THE VIETNAM WAR]

Please note, the NAME field includes a primary designation as well as alternate namingsoften in common or popular usage. The DEDICATED field refers to the most recent dedication, most often, butnot necessarily the original dedication date. If the monument did not have a formal dedication, the yearlisted reflects the date of installation.

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