Village of Germantown - Jim Hiemann, who served in Vietnam in 1970 and 1971 and is the co-chair of the Germantown American Legion, will see the reality of a two-year dream this Labor Day weekend.
After touring 1,300 communities nationwide, Germantown gets its turn to host The Moving Wall, a half-size replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.
“I wanted it to be in Germantown mainly because I don’t think I’ll get out to the Wall in Washington, D.C., so it’s an honor that we get it here,” Hiemann said. “We’re honoring all those who were killed in action from Washington County - we’re focusing on them as well as the rest of the states and all Vietnam Veterans who were killed in action.”
There are 58,307 names on The Wall, 14 of which were soldiers from Washington County and two from Germantown. The families of the 14 soldiers have been invited to attend the five-day event.
The Moving Wall will arrive in the community from Menomonee Falls on Sept. 1 after being escorted by a group of 40 veterans on motorcycles.The Wall will be on display from Sept. 1-5 at Kennedy Middle School’s athletic field.
In addition to The Wall, there will be a Healing Field display of hundreds of American flags. The community is invited to purchase a flag for $35 to write a message on the tag for someone who has served in the military. A Vietnam Era Educational Hall is being held in conjunction to the Wall from through Sept. 5. at the Germantown American Legion to educate the community on what the world was like at the time of the war.
“It will be a big boost for the community, and it gets the word out about Germantown,” Heimann said. “We’re really hoping to educate. There’s been great cooperation from the village and Germantown School District, without which we wouldn’t be able to get the wall up there.”
Germantown Village President Dean Wolter commended the dedication of community volunteers to make the Wall a reality.
"The Vietnam Moving Wall will highlight what is best about Germantown, the willingness of our residents to volunteer for a meaningful event when provided the opportunity to serve," Wolter said. "The success of this event will be measured in many ways, from the learning experiences of Germantown students, to the quiet personal reflection of veterans as they come and visit The Wall and healing field of flags. My thanks and appreciation goes to the American Legion Post 1 for bringing this great event to Germantown."