Amovie prop that duplicates a portion of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington was installed Saturday at a Newhall cemetery after Vietnam veterans secured permission for its use in Memorial Day weekend observances.
The partial replica, which is one-tenth the size of the original wall, was used as a backdrop for the television movie "To Heal a Nation," airing at 9 p.m. Sunday on NBC, and it will be the focus of Memorial Day services at Eternal Valley Memorial Park, the Newhall cemetery. The movie tells the story behind the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington.
Monday's 90-minute program at Eternal Valley begins at 11 a.m. and is open to the public. It is sponsored by the Vietnam Veterans of America, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and Eternal Valley.
The replica is valued at $40,000 and consists of 14 panels--instead of the original's 140--inscribed with the names of the dead, said park spokesman Brian Surette.
It took three hours to install, and consists of plywood covered with tinted Formica to give the appearance of granite. The names on the panels were applied by silk screen.
The public may view the wall between 8:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. until Tuesday, when it will be dismantled. Vietnam veterans, who were instrumental in securing permission from the movie producers to use the replica, will be standing guard from 6 p.m. on to prevent any vandalism, Surette said.
"Anyone who has any feeling about the Vietnam War should come up and see this memorial," Surette said. "It's breathtaking."