Unlike other wars where the blood of U.S. servicemembers was spilled, those who fought in Vietnam were, for the first time our nation’s history, not welcomed home as the heroes that they were. After five decades, it is time that these extraordinary patriots are recognized for their incredible selfless service and sacrifice in defense of the pillars of freedom that America was built upon. While it’s important that all Americans understand that the warrior should never be blamed for war, it is equally important to ensure that future generations remember the bravery and courage they demonstrated on the distant battlefields of Southeast Asia.
The USS Midway Museum will honor and pay tribute to all U.S. military members who served during the Vietnam War all year long including a ceremony on March 29, at 9 a.m., virtual engagement opportunities, special Vietnam War stories and more. Continue reading to learn more.
The USS Midway helps with the evacuation of Saigon in 1975.
50th Anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War Commemoration Ceremony
March 29, 2023 9 a.m.
Free public ceremony. Doors close at 9:20 a.m.
Ceremony will be held RAIN or SHINE
March 29, 2023, marks the 50th anniversary of when the last U.S. troops left Vietnam and the final group of American prisoners of war (POWs) were freed and left Hanoi. On this day, Midway will host a special flight-deck commemoration ceremony that will feature several guest speakers who will describe how their heroic, harrowing and heartbreaking experiences during the war changed their lives and the lives of their families forever.
Col. Jim Collins, USMC (ret.) – Member of Marine reconnaissance battalion
Roy Knight, Jr. III – His father, a U.S. Air Force pilot, was killed in action
Courtney Herrmann – South Vietnamese refugee evacuated from Saigon to USS Midway
Cmdr. Everett Alvarez, USN (ret.) – Navy pilot and prisoner of war
A special wreath-laying and military flyover will also highlight the ceremony. All Vietnam War veterans will receive a special “challenge coin” honoring their service and sacrifice as well as a commemorative lapel pin from the Vietnam War Commemoration Office in Washington D.C.
The ceremony is free and open to the public. Attending guests are able to remain on Midway and enjoy the museum following the ceremony.
Meet the Aviators Vietnam War Edition
Talk to aviators that flew aircraft in the Vietnam War that are on display at the museum. Hear firsthand accounts about the planes they flew during the war.
Free Admission for Vietnam Veterans
In honor of our Vietnam Veteran Heroes, we’d like to welcome you to our museum free of charge on March 29th. Offer only available at the ticket booth with show of military ID.
Open Doors-Vietnam POWs 50 Years of Freedom
Stop by to see a photo tribute to Vietnam Prisoners of War & Celebration of Freedom on loan from the Coronado Historical Association Museum.
The Art of Immortalizing Heroes by Chief Pisano
Award-winning artist Pisano will be on site exhibiting 3D industrial art bringing awareness about Veterans struggles and a tribute to those that fought for our freedoms.
Vietnam Veterans and Family of Veterans Virtual Connection
Connect with Vietnam Veterans and families of Veterans on Midway’s Facebook group. This group will be up all year long to engage with folks from all around the world including Midway staff and personnel. Post pictures, say thank you or simply read and like posts and comments.
Links and Resources
Vietnam War Memorial in La Mesa
Vietnam War Sailor Memorial Coronado
Vietnam Unit Memorial Monument
The Veterans Museum in Balboa Park
VVA472 Vietnam Veterans Memorial at Miramar National Cemetery
SDSU War Memorial on Aztec Green