By Robin GOLDSWORTHY
In May 2012, a presidential proclamation was issued that read, in part, “let us renew our sacred commitment to those who answered our country’s call in Vietnam and those who awaited their safe return.” Part of that recognition was establishing a partnership between the federal government and local governments, private organizations and communities across America to distribute up to 7 million unique lapel pins in small ceremonies and big community meetings across America.
On May, 32 veterans of American Legion Post 288 received their lapel pins during the Post’s regular monthly meeting. The pins were presented by the San Fernando Valley Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). This chapter of the DAR is one of more than 4,500 commemorative partners of the federal government around the nation presenting the Vietnam pins.
Lynn McGinnis of Post 288 received one of the lapel pins. He describes himself as a Vietnam-era vet, but he didn’t travel to Southeast Asia. Though he was pleased at receiving the recognition, he said he was happier that those who traveled halfway around the world were honored for their service.
“I’m happy for the guys who went to combat who received the pins. They were the ones who got the brunt of the changing culture when they got home – the spitting, the name-calling,” said McGinnis. “I felt a lot of satisfaction for my brothers and sisters who went to the combat zone.”
The presidential proclamation extends the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War through Nov. 11, 2025 – Veterans Day.