ASHLAND • Seven Tippah County servicemen who died in the Vietnam war are listed on The Wall That Heals Vietnam Veterans Memorial replica that opens Thursday, March 12 in Ashland.
The Wall That Heals will be set up at the Benton County Fairgrounds and will be open from 12:01 a.m. Thursday through 2 p.m. Sunday, March 15. This replica, sponsored by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, allows local residents to honor those who served in the U.S. Armed Services and the more than 58,000 who died during the Vietnam War.
Like the original Memorial, The Wall That Heals is erected in a chevron-shape and visitors are able to do name rubbings of individual service member’s names on The Wall. The names are listed in order of date of casualty and alphabetically on each day. Beginning at the center/apex, the names start on the East Wall (right-hand side) working their way out to the end of that wing, picking up again at the far end of the West Wall (left-hand side) and working their way back to the center/apex. The first and last casualties are side by side at the apex of the Memorial.
Local casualties listed on The Wall are as follows:
SP4 Raymond A. Bizzell of Ripley was born on October 18, 1945. He was in the Army and was killed January 13, 1967. His name can be found on Panel 14E – Row 19.
SP4 Terry Lee Blythe of Ripley was born July 6, 1942. He was in the Army and was killed on Thanksgiving Day, November 25, 1965. His name can be found on Panel 3E – Row 112.
SP4 David T. Chapman of Dumas was born August, 2, 1948. He was in the Army and was killed May 24, 1969. His name can be found on Panel 24W – Row 92.
SGT Louis C. Hines of Tiplersville was born on November 29, 1934. He was in the Army and was killed September 21, 1966. His name can be found on Panel 10E – Row 128.
SGT Gerald Clinton Mauney of Dry Creek was born on December 26, 1948. He was in the Army and was killed May, 16, 1970. His name can be found on Panel 10W – Row 49.
SGT Richard A. Menees of Blue Mountain was born on January 31, 1945. He was in the Marines and was killed March 31, 1967. His name can be found on Panel 17E – Row 80.
CPL Leroy Rutherford of Blue Mountain was born June 1, 1946. He was in the Army and was killed September 3, 1969. His name can be found on Panel 18W – Row 30e
The exhibit includes a three-quarter scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial along with a mobile education center. The traveling exhibit stands 7.5 feet high at its tallest point and honors the more than three million Americans who served in the U.S. Armed Forces in the Vietnam War. The Wall consists of 58,276 names of servicemen and women who died in Vietnam.
On Saturday, March 14, a memorial ceremony honoring veterans on The Wall and those still living will take place at 10 a.m. at the fairgrounds. The Mississippi National Guard will be posting the flags and local veterans will do a presentation of the wreaths. Retired General Al Hopkins and U.S. Congressman General Trent Kelly will be guest speakers. Local veterans and their families will be acknowledged and Columbus Air Force Base is scheduled to fly over.
The Wall is free to attend but the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund will have a donation box in place if anyone wants to donate. All donations go directly to the VVMF.