Vietnamese-Australian Community Honours 521 Australians Lost in the Vietnam War
The Vietnamese-Australian community (led by the Vietnamese Community of Australia – Victoria Chapter (VCA-Vic), in a final gesture to mark forty years of settlement in Australia, are creating a memorial to honour the 521 Australians who died during the Vietnam war.
The memorial has been constructed in the Kevin Wheelahan Gardens, adjacent to the Sunshine RSL, Dickson St, Sunshine.
The initial ‘Turning of the Sod’ Ceremony saw 521 white crosses, bearing the name of each of the fallen veterans, an Australian Flag and a Poppy of Remembrance placed in tribute.
Each of the 521 fallen veterans has been ‘adopted’[ by a Vietnamese community family, who specifically made donations to honour each veteran. After the ceremony, the families were presented with the cross for their fallen soldier and these crosses were taken home and placed on family altars, where they will be remembered and honoured as one pf their own family.
The Memorial also includes a tribute to the five Vietnamese Generals, who sacrificed their lives rather than surrender to the enemy in April 1975.
There are also plans for a book to mark this special occasion to launched at the first Commemorative Service on 30 April 2018, which also marks the fall of Saigon and South Vietnam to the communists.
A Dedication Ceremony for the new Memorial was held at 1100 on 16thDecember 2017, with members of the Vietnamese Australian community and members of the Vietnam Veterans Branch attending to pay their respects and commemorate the fallen.
Above: Fr Huy Hoang blesses the newly unveiled Memorial