SOURCE: Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks

Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks

August 12, 2009 12:22 ET

Traveling Vietnam Wall Comes to Westlake Village

Community Invited to Pay Respects to America's War Veterans

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA--(Marketwire - August 12, 2009) - The Dignity Memorial® Vietnam Wall, a three-quarter-scale traveling replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., will be open for public viewing over Labor Day weekend, September 4-7, 2009, at Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks Memorial Park, 5600 Lindero Canyon Rd., Westlake Village, CA 91362.

"The monument was created as a service to those who might never travel to the nation's capital to experience the Vietnam Wall firsthand," said Jim Biby, market director of the Dignity Memorial network of funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers in the Los Angeles area. "Our replica offers visitors a chance for healing and reflections, and we are very pleased to be able to share it with the community."

Free and open to the public 24 hours a day from Friday, September 4 through Monday, September 7, the replica is eight feet high and 240 feet long. Its black, reflective surface is inscribed with the names of more than 58,000 servicemen and women who died or are missing in Vietnam. Paper and pencils will be provided so visitors can make rubbings of names etched on the wall. The Dignity Memorial provider network created the replica in 1990. The Dignity Memorial Vietnam Wall is dedicated to all Americans who served in Vietnam and honors all veterans of the U.S. military.

Activities and ceremonies planned in conjunction with the exhibition include the following:

--  A motorcade of veterans and other riders from motorcycle clubs will
    depart Bakersfield, CA on Wednesday, September 2 at 9:30 a.m. The riders
    will stop in Santa Clarita, CA to meet up with additional riders and leave
    at approximately 12 p.m. to escort the wall to Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks
    Memorial Park, where it is scheduled to arrive at 1 p.m.
--  The Purple Heart ceremony will take place on Wednesday, September 2 at
    2 p.m. as the first two pieces of the Dignity Memorial Vietnam Wall are put
    together.  All Purple Heart recipients are welcome to attend.
--  The Opening Ceremony will take place on Friday, September 4 at 10 a.m.
    During the ceremony, speakers will include Daniel Smith III, USMC, retired,
    Chairman, Board of Directors, Memorial Honor Detail; Jim Biby, market
    director of the Dignity Memorial provider network; and keynote speaker Gill
    Gallo, director of Riverside National Cemetery.  The ceremony will also
    include a Huey helicopter dropping rose petals.
--  On Saturday, September 5, a candlelight ceremony will begin at 7:30
    p.m.  The service will feature performances by Rev. Donald Siler, pastor of
    Mount Calvary Baptist Church and lead singer of "The Truth" International
    Gospel Group, and Pat Brown, actress and gospel singer.  Additionally, John
    Hosier will give a keynote address followed by the lighting of the candles.
--  Beginning at 2 p.m. on Sunday, September 6, an afternoon concert of
    singing will feature Bridge of Sighs, members of Join The Band, and other
--  The Closing Ceremony will occur on Monday, September 7 at 10 a.m. with
    a keynote address by Cynthia Nunez, Director of the Los Angeles National
    Cemetery.  The service will feature a musical performance by Mark Taylor.
    Following the service, the replica wall will be taken down.

The three-day exhibition is sponsored locally by Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks - Griffin Memorial Park, Mortuary and Crematory, FD 1344 Westlake Village, Calif., with kind support from Morningstar Productions, Roxbury Records, SMS Generators, The Ventura County Star and The Acorn newspapers, Corridor Communications, Inc.,, Thousand Oaks Printing, Marketwire, the Four Seasons Hotel, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Westlake Village Inn, Arrowhead Water, Jon Gordon Photography, Marla Aufmuth Photography, Pelican Junction, Kents Bromeliads, Trader Joes, Command Performance, Valley Crest, J H Russell, and Lumber City. Volunteers are needed to read the names on the wall overnight. To volunteer, please call Ann at 818-292-8430. Please see our Facebook page:

After Westlake Village, Calif., the monument will be on display in Phoenix from September 18-20, 2009. To date, the replica has traveled to more than 200 cities across the country and has been visited by millions of Americans.

The Dignity Memorial Vietnam Wall is one of many efforts of the Dignity Memorial network to honor and support our nation's veterans and active military. Other initiatives and programs include the Veterans Planning Guide, the Dignity Memorial Homeless Veterans Burial Program, educational veterans' seminars and special pricing and benefits for members of three veterans service organizations.

Pierce Brothers Valley Oaks - Griffin Memorial Park, Mortuary and Crematory is a proud Dignity Memorial provider in Westlake Village, Calif. The Dignity Memorial network of more than 1,600 funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers is North America's most trusted resource for funeral and memorialization services. Dignity Memorial providers offer an unmatched combination of products and locations serving families with care, integrity, respect and service excellence. For more information, call 818-889-0902 or visit

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