'Wall that Heals' Vietnam War memorial won't come to Waynesville this year

Darrell Todd Maurina

WAYNESVILLE, Mo. (Jan. 3, 2023) -- A Vietnam veterans memorial won't be coming to the Fort Leonard Wood area this year, but according to Waynesville Economic Development Director Doug Potts, it may be possible to bring the "Wall that Heals" to Waynesville next year.

Speaking at Tuesday evening's Waynesville Economic Development Committee meeting, Potts said the cost to bring the wall to Waynesville for a full week would be $11,000. However, he said that amount was minor and likely could be covered by donations.

"The reason why I brought this up was it was not the cost as the determining factor; the dates they brought to us were not good and the chance of us getting an ideal date were very, very low," Potts said.

The "Wall that Heals" is a three-quarter-size traveling version of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. According to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, the organization that sponsors the "Wall that Heals," organizers plan to bring the traveling exhibit to 32 different communities around the country this year. The closest community is Springfield, where the wall will be set up from June 8 to 11.

Potts said he plans to visit the Wall while it comes to Missouri. Organizers are interested in bringing it to Waynesville due to the community's proximity to U.S. Army Fort Leonard Wood and high number of veterans who are likely to work as volunteers.

"We should have done that a long time ago, but we never thought of it," said Councilman Bill Farnham.

In other business:

• Committee members approved Fuentes Home Improvement Services, a home-based business, for the January business spotlight.
• A meeting to plan this April's 100th Anniversary of the Route 66 Roubidoux Bridge in Waynesville, MO will be Jan. 23 at 5 p.m.