It’s a familiar sight to those who drive Sylvan Heights/Orchard between Delridge and High Point — the Vietnamese Cultural Center north of Home Depot and next to Tug, a simple structure with a grand statue out back. As noted in the feature story we published last July, that statue pays tribute to 13th century Vietnamese hero Gen. Tran Hung Dao. But on Saturday, those gathered at the center were there to honor other soldiers – the thousands of Americans and Vietnamese who lost their lives in last century’s decades of war:
Chanting honored those soldiers, as did a drum ceremony:
Those in attendance heard from Dr. Dung Nguyen, M.D., who chaired the event.
A moment was offered for veterans to pause and remember:
A wreath was laid, before a moment of silence:
As explained on the event invitation, Vietnamese-American communities take time around the end of April/early May each year for ceremonies like this; as this online timeline reminds us, this is the time of year, 34 years ago, when the war finally ended.
(For the history of Vietnamese immigration to the U.S. in wartime and afterward, here’s a city-hosted website.)