The Moving Wall brings hope for loved ones' further healing
For several generations of today's Americans, the Vietnam War occurred before they were born.
Their recollections come from history books and old news reels. It's a long time ago.
Not so, however, for those who received a knock on the door to be told they had lost a loved one to the war. For them, the pain is still present these many years later.
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Such is the case for the Westra family. As told on today's front page, discussing the death of LeRoy Westra in Vietnam in 1971 still stirs tears.
Westra is one of 23 Northumber-land County citizens represented on The Moving Wall that continues its five-day visit to Coal Township today.
The wall's presence no doubt creates conflict for many. It dredges up perhaps the worst moment in their lives - the death of a child, sibling or other loved one.
But in detailing the struggle to cope with her son's death, Kathryn Westra noted how she was inspired by the many people who came to his funeral. Friends from school, from Numidia Dragway where he competed, and from the Boy Scout troop in which he had been a member.
The support meant so much.
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The presence of the wall, and the opportunity for those from the community to visit and pay their respects, could provide the same inspiration for those whose pain is nearer the surface again this weekend.
We hope such recognition will serve to further heal their wounds.