“The Wall That Heals”


We've spearheaded the "Bring Back The Wall" Campaign to raise the necessary funds for purchase of "The Wall". "The Wall" has been donated to the James E. Van Zandt VA Medical Center, Altoona, Pennsylvania where it is permanently displayed.


"The Wall That Heals," a one-half-scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was on display at the James E. Van Zandt Medical Center May 20-23, 1999. During those four days, approximately 30,000 people came to pay their respects to the 58,208 men and women whose names are inscribed on "The Wall." Those men and woman made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. Over three thousand of them (3,141) were from Pennsylvania. The response to "The Wall" was so positive that many did not wish to see it leave and expressed a desire to assist in the effort to "Bring Back The Wall" permanently to Altoona, Pennsylvania rather than see the piece retired to permanent storage. Fire Base Eagle, with the help of the VA Medical Center and strong support from the community, have raised through donations the money to purchase "The Wall." The $50,000 goal was achieved in just six short weeks and has enabled us to purchase "The Wall."


One of the unexpected gifts of "The Wall That Heals" is that it transcends the war in Vietnam to help our nation renew its relationship with veterans of all wars. "The Wall That Heals" has helped veterans from World War I to Desert Storm find healing and a powerful connection with the common military experience. Non-veterans, from school children to parents and grandparents, find in "The Wall" a deeper appreciation of the military personnel's sacrifice, service, and courage, and draw from the experience lessons for life today and in the future.


"The Wall That Heals" offered another powerful gift to the nation: an opportunity for the souls enshrined on the Memorial to journey back to the places they called home, to exist among friends and family once more. Now they rest in permanent comfort and peace on grounds of the James E. Van Zandt VA Medical Center in Altoona, Pennsylvania.


Visitors that visit and touch "The Wall That Heals" touch each other's lives in innumerable ways. Fire Base Eagle is grateful for the opportunity to help create a permanent home for "The Wall That Heals" in Altoona.