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Who Is That Man, Anyway?
Subject: Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall
Sculptor: Maya Ying Lin
Location: Potomac Park
( Constitution Ave. & 23rd )
Controversial in its conception and at its dedication, the Wall has become the most visited memorial in DC. It is made of 140 panels of highly polished granite and bears the names of 58,226 individuals who lost their lives or are still missing in action because of the Vietnam Conflict. Names marked with a diamond indicate individuals whose deaths were confirmed; those marked with a cross are individuals who are still missing in action.
Visitors began spontaneously leaving tributes at the base of the Wall while it was still being constructed. Friends, family, and others leave behind flowers, wreaths, military awards, letters, photos and other memorabilia. These are collected every evening by Park Service personnel and stored in archives. An exhibit of Wall tributes is now included in the permanent collection of the American History Museum.
The designer, Maya Ying Lin, was a 21-year-old architecture student at Yale University when she submitted her winning design.
Photos and text copyright © 2001 Jean K. Rosales and Michael R. Jobe, All Rights Reserved
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