National Vietnam War Veterans Day on March 29 honors the men and women who served and sacrificed during the longest conflict in United States history.
On March 29, 1973, combat and combat support units withdrew from South Vietnam. Generations later, Veterans of this time period are gaining the respect that was not so freely given upon their return. Involving five U.S. presidents, crossing nearly two decades and 500,000 U.S.military personnel, it left an indelible mark on the American psyche.
Returning veterans did not always receive respectful welcomes upon their arrival on American soil. Over 58,000 killed, never to return. The observance recognizes the military service of these men and women who answered the call to serve their country when she needed them. They didn’t make the decision to go to war.
Throughout National Vietnam War Veterans Day, we recognize the service and duty rendered by all servicemen and women of this era.
HOW TO OBSERVE #VietnamWarVeteransDay
- Organizations across the country host events honoring National Vietnam War Veterans Day. These events include memorials, speeches, and luncheons honoring Vietnam veterans and their families.
- Invite a veteran you know to join you or help organize an event.
- Thank a Vietnam Veteran.
- Buy them a drink or lunch.
- Visit a local memorial. Volunteer to help organize events.
- Support a veteran’s organization in your community. Volunteer and offer your skills.
- Watch a Vietnam War documentary. Some films we found are The Vietnam War: A Film by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick or Last Days in Vietnam directed by Rory Kennedy or Vietnam Nurses by Timeline.
- Read about the Vietnam War. We recommend: Vietnam – A History by Stanley Karnow or They Marched into Sunlight: War and Peace, Vietnam and America, October 1967 by David Maraniss or The Quiet American by Graham Green and Robert Stone.
- Send them a shout-out using #VietnamWarVeteransDay on social media.
NATIONAL VIETNAM WAR VETERANS DAY HISTORY
U.S. Sens. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., and Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., introduced legislation in 2017 to honor Vietnam Veterans with a day. They chose the anniversary of the withdrawal of military units from South Vietnam. President Donald Trump signed the National Vietnam War Veterans Day Act on March 28, 2017, calling for U.S. flags to be flown on March 29 for those who served.
Vietnam War Veterans FAQ
Q. Does every U.S. state have a Vietnam Veterans’ memorial?
A. No. Currently, 13 states have war memorials specific to Vietnam veterans. However, war memorials in every state honor all veterans regardless of when they served.
Q. How many Medals of Honor were awarded to Vietnam Veterans?
A. The U.S. Congress named 240 Medal of Honor recipients from the Vietnam War.