Traveling Memorial Wall on the way To Ennis
Carol Grey Honza
ENNIS - The second organizational meeting of the committee to bring the Traveling Memorial Wall to Ennis met at the Quality Inn on Tuesday, Jan. 5, with 21 committee members in attendance.
The wall, officially named the “American Veterans Traveling Tribute, is sponsored by the Traveling Wall Foundation, and is scheduled to arrive in Ennis on Wednesday, May 5.
The Wall, once erected and in place -- is approximately as long as a football field.The Wall transport entourage will be welcomed at the outskirts of Ennis by approximately 30 American Legion cycle honor guards, area volunteer fire department vehicles, and fire personnel who will escort The Wall through Ennis to its destination.
The preferred site for The Wall to be erected is the old Intermediate School grounds located behind Don Jose’s Restaurant -- just off U.S. Highway 287.
The Wall contains the names of 58,000 Vietnam Veterans who sacrificed their lives for America.The Wall also honors all American Veterans of all wars, conflicts, and all First Responders who have given their lives to keep America safe and free.
Once erected, the events at the Wall site will offer the public a week of patriotic proceedings organized to honor those fallen heroes. The public will have numerous opportunities to view the Wall during that week which will include – keynote speakers, benedictions, musical presentations, military honor salutes, and honor guard programs.
Food and drinks will be provided by local veterans organizations.
Discussions at the meeting included naming the week-long event -- “Welcome Home...Ennis Honors Her Veterans”
Other issues discussed:
- A patriotic parade with floats
- Identifying fallen veterans of Ellis County at local cemeteries, with scout troop participation by placing U.S. Flags at their grave sites
- Organizing a children’s patriotic poster contest prior to the event
- Locating oldest male and female veterans currently living in Ellis County
- Involving local, and school musical talent
“Of course, all plans are subject to local, county and school district approval,” said Marylyn Wylie, meeting coordinator. “Participation of rural volunteer fire departments of Alma, Avalon, Bardwell, Bristol, Central High, Ennis, Ferris,Garrett, Italy, Palmer, and Telico, and our local fire and police departments -- will also be an important element of this event,” added Wylie.Our local Veterans organizations – The American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars, and VFW Auxiliary will also be on board.”
“Community involvement is highly encouraged for this honor celebration as well.”“Therefore, we will have representatives discuss the committee’s on-going plans at local service organization meetings, and provide updates and announcements via the local media so that everyone will understand how very important this event will be for our City,” concluded Wylie.