Kaddish to honor soldiers at Wall replica in Oro Valley

The replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (bringthewallaz.com)

Riverfront Park in Oro Valley was chosen as the only location in Arizona for “The Wall That Heals” exhibition, featuring a replica of the national capital’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial. The Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona Northwest Division is among sponsors of the exhibit, hosted March 15-18 by the Town of Oro Valley Parks Department and Bring the Wall, Inc.

In 1996, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund unveiled a half-scale replica of the memorial, designed to travel to communities throughout the United States. “The Wall That Heals” has visited nearly 600 communities throughout the nation, spreading its healing legacy to millions. The exhibits tell the story of the Vietnam War, the era surrounding the conflict, and The Wall. It’s designed to put America’s experiences in Vietnam in an historical and cultural context. This year’s tour features a new, three-quarters size replica.

JFSA Northwest Division Advisory Council Chair Alan Kendal played a role to ensure that fallen Jewish soldiers enshrined on the wall will be honored at the local opening and closing ceremonies.  At 9 a.m. on Thursday, March 15, Rabbi Avraham Alpert will deliver the opening Kaddish along with other chaplains’ prayers and an honor guard. Closing ceremonies at 9 a.m. on Sunday, March 18, will include a Kaddish by Rabbi Sanford Seltzer. Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild is expected to welcome distinguished speakers, the honor guard, and prayers by other chaplains that morning. The Wall will be lit and guarded around the clock during its stay, so the public may visit at any time. It will be disassembled at 3 p.m. March 18.

Numerous civic organizations, private citizens, local businesses and veterans’ organizations made this visit possible. Any excess funds raised will benefit a veteran’s charity organization. Volunteers and funding continue to be welcome; email support@bringthewall.az.

Riverfront Park is located at 551 W. Lambert Lane. For more information, visit bringthewallaz.com or thewallthatheals.org.