Cadets Visit the Museum of the Republic of Vietnam
The Vietnam Normalization Staff Ride visited the Museum of the Republic of Vietnam in Westminster, California to meet with South Vietnamese veterans who fled from Vietnam after the fall of Saigon in April of 1975. Cadets interviewed several individuals and hear their stories of serving their country and the aftermath of war. In the afternoon, the historians visited the Sid Goldstein Freedom Park and met with architect Cuu Lam Nguyen to learn about his inspiration for the statue and memorial in the park. He explained the symbolism used to depict strong emotions of both sorrow and hope in the design of the memorial that serves an important role in the Vietnamese-American community. Cadets then took the opportunity to reflect on what they had seen and learned thus far on the trip before being welcomed into the home of Mr. Dang and his family. His daughter Kim graduated from the United States Military Academy in 2016. The Dangs shared a wonderful meal of home-cooked Vietnamese food, allowing the Cadets to experience first-hand Vietnamese hospitality. Next, the staff ride will fly to Vietnam to deepen their understanding of the Vietnam War, normalization, and reconciliation.