LZ Vietnam Monument Dedication Ceremony
If you'd like to talk with one of the founders or make a donation, please call Nick Parnello at 815-968-1040.
It was a beautiful day at LZ Peace Memorial at Midway Village on Saturday, September 26, 2020 when the LZ Vietnam Monument was unveiled and dedicated, It's 4 feet by 9 feet slab of black granite, and weighs in at 900 pounds, with an engraved map of Vietnam. It was a little chilly and windy but every day is a beautiful day at the Peace Memorial.
Monday, Oct. 5, we added more before and after pictures from Seabee and Tango. Click the link above. You'll find links to this ceremony and to pictures and videos of other events at LZ Peace Memorial.
Over 100 people joined together as the 900 lb. black granite memorial was unveiled. It was the culmination of over a year of hard work and determination of the Vietnam Veterans Honor Society and the LZ Smoke Brothers.
The ceremony was to start with a parachute jump by Jeff Colllins but was cancelled for safety reasons. The pilot, Scott Gaddini and Jeff needed another 500 feet altitude for a safe jump. So they wisely called off the jump.
Boy Scouts of Blackhawk Council led in the singing of the National Anthem with Mr. Marine. Smoke Brother Charlie 6 and Capt. Mike rang the Bell of Honor for all branches of the service.
Nick Parnello thanked many of those for their hard work. We'd still be there if he thanked everyone in person. Great job, Blackjack. Marine Colonel Dan McDade, aka "Colonel Music" provided beautiful music on his harmonica and acoustic guitar. What a musician he is and a greater Marine.
Mr. Marine talked of the meaning of the new memorial and what the memorial means not only Vietnam veterans but to all of us citizens. Gold Star Mother Angie White and her son along with Master Chief Dale Pohl placed soil from Da Nang, Vietnam inside the LZ Vietnam Monument.
Venerable Thi spoke of the courage of Vietnam veterans thanking America for their help in Vietnam, He invited us to attend ceremonies at the local Buddist Temples.
Dave Byrnes, Johnny One Wing, Charlie 6 and Scott Lewendowski spoke movingly about the memorial. General Borling also spoke so eloquently about veterans, peace and war.
Johnny One Wing introduced his home run-hitting grandson who had a full baseball scholarship at a big league college. Instead of playing baseball with the boys, he's joining "The Few. The Proud. The Marines." The United States Marine Corp. Semper Fi, what a guy. Be safe, young Marine.
Scott Hale provided us with a very moving benetiction. A wonderful group of fine Americans. Thanks to all those who took the time out of their busy day for attending. Be safe. We'll be add to this page as others send us their thoughts.
Joe Musso, U. S. Army and Vietnam veteran, was also in attendance. We've been friends over 65 years, since Whig Hill grade school, but we didn't even recognize each from a distance due to social distancing and masking. Hello, Joe.
The LZ Peace Memorial is a place of honor for those veterans who served our country, in war and in peace. This memorial stands as a testimony to those soldiers from Winnebago County who made the ultimate sacrifice at a time of great conflict. We’re located at Midway Village Museum, 6799 Guilford Road, in Rockford, Illinois.
For more information please call one of the founders, Nick Parnello at 815-968-1040 and he will give you all the details.
The founders of Vietnam Veterans Honor Society. L to R: Paul Cassioppi, Tony Circelli, Tony Bove, and Nick Parnello at the dedication of the LZ Peace Memorial on Memorial Day 2005.