It’s a haunting image. Two large black triangles stretched out beside each other – with names etched into the rough stone – the names of 58,300 men and women who lost their lives in the Vietnam War in the 1960s and 70s.
For a lot of people it is a long and difficult journey to go to Washington, D.C. to see the Vietnam Wall. Seeing the need to bring the Wall to the masses, volunteers for the National Park Service founded The Virtual Wall – a website that hosts pages for each man and woman memorialized on the monument.
Founder Jim Schueckler said the group saw the need for the website through its work at the monument.
“[It] was founded by volunteers who knew how much people who visited the Wall wanted to tell others about their relative or friend who died in the war,” Schueckler said. “The volunteers who work on The Virtual Wall are all relatives of those who died in the war or served there themselves.”
The website, www.virtual wall.org is cataloged by city and state, or by last name. Each fallen soldier has his or her own page with a service record, medals awarded and for some, a photo.
There will be a place for visitors to leave remembrances for friends and loved ones, but that part of the site is currently unavailable. Schueckler said the site is going through a software upgrade to give visitors a place to leave notes and photos.
Schueckler said the site is always open for suggestions and additions. If family members or friends have photos or more information about an individual, visit the Contact Us section of the website to find the proper channel for a submission.
Follow the link below to the West Virginia page.