Those working to establish a monument in Hagerstown honoring Vietnam War veterans are hoping a new website and the option to contribute to the project through PayPal will keep the momentum going.
In June, a ceremonial groundbreaking was held for the monument, which is to be built along Walnut Street in the area of Hagerstown City Park.
The structure, which is to consist of a main structure with an archway, benches and three flagpoles, is being designed by Greencastle Bronze and Granite, which was also involved in the design of a local Korean War monument.
Although the monument will pay tribute to 17 county residents killed in the war, an official with the project said it is meant to honor all Vietnam veterans.
Jim Kline, chairman of the Joint Veterans Council of Washington County and chairman of a committee working on the monument, said some Vietnam veterans like to visit different war memorials, where they might reflect and remember close friends.
“I think it will be good for the city,” said Kline, who noted that the monument will also be near the Hagerstown Cultural Trail.
Launched Oct. 20, a new website about the monument offers a proposed layout, information on upcoming fundraisers, links to veteran sites, stories about the war and a donate tab which offers a PayPal option of contributing to the project.
The Joint Veterans Council is working to raise $150,000 for the monument and has raised a little more than $63,000, according to a news release.
Antietam Broadband is trying to energize the fundraising effort by announcing it will match the first $15,000 of additional donations received, the release said.
Antietam Broadband, which has also agreed to donate $25,000 in-kind promotional support, produced a 30-second commercial about the project which features four local Vietnam veterans: Stan Stouffer, a member of the Washington County Board of Education; Lloyd “Pete” Waters, a local writer and columnist; Gary Shank, present commander of Clopper-Michael Post 10 of the American Legion in Boonsboro; and Jim Hutson.
Kline said Antietam Broadband has been airing the commercial on its cable channels.
Building the monument, which will be the city’s first significant monument to honor veterans of the Vietnam War, has been talked about for years, Kline said.