A New Pole and Flag For Vietnam Memorial

LA MESA -- Nearly 45 years after they first gathered along Spring Street in La Mesa, some of the original builders of this city's Vietnam Memorial were back in town and working to polish the site.
Denise Evers Rhoads, who now lives in Tuscon, joined her grandchildren and Mayor Art Madrid to run a new flag up the newly installed, 35-foot flag pole, which is part of this project now underway.
Rhodes is the daughter of the La Mesa couple who led the effort at the height of the Vietnam War to enshrine the community's sacrifice in that effort.
In many ways, the effort has never ended.
Rhoads said her mother, who at 93 is still with us, and others involved in the original effort have returned to town over the years to renovate the memorial.
This year's effort included adding new names to the memorial, names that surfaced after the original bronze plaques were installed by the Heartland Youth For Decency, which was the name of the group that originally had 2,000 attend the 1969 dedication of this shrine.
"We did the research for the original list from the newspaper clippings,'' Rhoads said. "Over the years, we heard about more.''
The original listings were also cleaned and are shining once again the sun. The landscaping is being revived and a new MIA element is being added to the installation.
The entire effort is scheduled to be done for a formal re-dedication of the site on June 14. Much of the labor and materials for this renovation is being donated or discounted. Contributions can still be made to the effort. Information can be found clicking here.

Gina Garcia is a Realtor (CalBRE #01704251) and is publisher of LaMesaToday.com. To contact her, e-mail Gina@GinaGarcia.net or call (619) 818-6982.

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Tags: Gina Garcia, La Mesa Today, La Mesa news, Mayor Art Madrid, Vietnam Memorial

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Comment by Batman on June 7, 2014 at 8:05pm

My family was unaffected by Viet Nam, but my dad's brother was lost in the Korean War in August of '52. Even though this happened long before I was born I could always see the loss in my grandmother's eyes. For many years it seemed a needless waste to lose a family member in a conflict so removed from our home soil. But after seeing how the North Korean government treats its people my only regret now is that my uncle and his colleagues were not able to finish the job. As despicable as war is there are things much worse.

Comment by Andrew Jackson on June 6, 2014 at 5:09pm

It is so nice to see this little triangle of a memorial get a beautiful facelift. My father served in Vietnam in the 1960's and, if he were alive today, would no doubt be proud of this Vietnam Memorial in La Mesa.

Comment by Jack Leary on May 16, 2014 at 12:44pm

I just love it when we pay homage to our flag and our veterans and service members...Great job.

Jack Leary  aka  Jump'n Jack Flash

Radio Host of the Military Appreciation Channel San Diego

Comment by Kat's World - Art on May 16, 2014 at 12:06pm
Absolutely Beautiful!

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