Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall coming to Fort Mill

The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall – a half-sized replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. – will make its first stop in Fort Mill in October, returning to York County for the first time in 11 years.

The traveling wall has toured the country since 1984, allowing people who cannot make it to the nation’s capital a chance to see it and the more than 58,000 names of the war dead on it. It made a stop in Rock Hill in 2003 and was seen by thousands.

The Fort Mill History Museum is playing host to the wall Oct. 16-19, with initial plans to set it up in Veterans Park on Main Street, said museum chairwoman Ann Evans. The museum hopes to raise the estimated $10,000 cost of bringing the wall here through sponsorships and donations.

“This is a very big deal for Fort Mill,” Evans said. “Exciting and patriotic.”

Several veterans groups already have pledged support, including the Patriot Guard and Rolling Thunder. The groups will escort the wall as it makes its way from Virginia, and guard it around the clock during its stay in Fort Mill, said Al Guess, a member of Rolling Thunder’s York County chapter.

“The honor of having the wall here is huge,” he said.

More details about the visit will be announced soon, Evans said.