The Wall That Heals replica in Muskogee

Posted at 1:36 PM, Apr 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-07 14:49:20-04

At 250-feet long and displaying more than 58,000 names, The Wall That Heals replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is an impressive site.

The traveling exhibit is on display at the Muskogee War Memorial Park until April 10.

The wall on display in Muskogee is a replica of the permanent wall in Washington, D.C., which displays the names of American men and women who lost their lives during the Vietnam War.

Staff with the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund transport the wall around the country. Patrick O'Neill with VVMF said the most emotional moments are when veterans find the names of their fellow servicemen and women. 

"They may stand back for a while and then finally come forward and find the name that they served with," O'Neill said. "Maybe somebody that they lost, it is not just the memorial, it is the emotions and the remembrance that comes with it."

Jesse Butler of Tahlequah is a veteran who has visited the memorial in Washington, D.C. He said he has also visited the replica on display in Muskogee, or similar replicas, at least 17 times. Thursday he was at the wall with a book in hand, which helps locate each name on the wall.

Butler said he volunteers to help families and other veterans find the names of their loved ones. 

"What I love about it and what brings it home to me, is when I find somebody's name and they break down and just start crying," Butler said. "That is the emotion that makes it all worth while to me."

The Memorial will be on display in Muskogee 24 hours a day until 6 p.m. Sunday. The wall features lights on top, so the names can be read at anytime of the day. There is no admission fee to see the Memorial.

A documentary is being shown at the Roxy Theater on Thursday and Friday night. The documentary titled 'The Wall That Heals,' shows the creation of the Vietnam Memorial Wall and looks at the impact behind it. Admission to the documentary is $2 and doors open at 6:15 each night. 

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