August 17, 2017

Moving Wall brings honor to those lost

By Jerry W. Kram
The Moving Wall lives up to its name in more ways than one.
The mundane reason for the name is that the panels bearing the names of service members killed in the Vietnam War are moved to whether an event is organized to display them. But the other reason the name is suited to the display is that no one can look at the stark black slabs and see all the names in white, realize that most of those names died when they were just 18 or 19 and not be moved.
More than 20 of the panels, representing the names of those killed in action from North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota were on display at the 4 Bears Events Center in New Town during the Little Shell Powwow. Area veterans, Tribal Chairman and Marine veteran Mark Fox, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum and other dignitaries launched the display with an honor song to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice.
There are five names from New Town and Mandaree on that wall. The names are still familiar those who knew them and know their families today – Valerian Finley and Myron Johnson from Mandaree and Roger Foreman, Byron Kulland and James Levings from New Town.
Emcee for the dedication, Lawrence Baker, powerfully recounted how he had been affected by the lives and deaths of these men. He said when he finally had his chance to visit the Vietnam Memorial in person, he made a rubbing of the name, Myron Johnson, and he still carries it with him to this day.

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