A national effort is underway to match names with faces on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. In Minnesota, volunteers need just a few more photos to do our part in the project.
Lost, but not forgotten
William Moncrief died in Vietnam at just 33.
"I remember the two officials from the army coming and one was a colonel, and my mom knew something was up right away," his son, Jack Moncrief said.
Jack was only 12 at the time, and lived in southeast Minneapolis. Since then, he has never visited the memorial to see his father's name, but that may all change.
For the past few years, volunteers like Herb Reckinger have visited libraries, searched countless high school yearbooks and newspaper clippings to collect photos of Minnesota's Vietnam veterans. Now, thanks to a letter from Jack, they finally have William Moncrief.
The Faces Never Forgotten campaign started six years ago. The goal is to add a photo and biography to more than 50,000 names on the wall and will be featured at the new Vietnam Wall Education Center scheduled for construction in the next few years. Minnesota has just a small handful left to name, about 3 to be exact.
Finding a photo of Joseph Heron, Melvin Stockdale and Bruce Olson is becoming nearly impossible.
Olson died in Vietnam when he was just 18. He attended Harding High School in St. Paul, but for some reason, never took a yearbook photo. No one knew his name in his old neighborhood.
Meanwhile, Moncrief now lives in Ham Lake, and with his father's photo, he says he'll finally visit that wall to honor his name.
How you can help
Nationally, the goal is to collect all the photos by May 25, Memorial Day.
Wall of Faces: http://www.vvmf.org/Wall-of-Faces