The Veterans National Memorial Shrine and Museum, 2122 O’Day Road near Arcola, has announced Friday a groundbreaking ceremony for its Vietnam wall construction project is planned for Nov. 11 at 10 a.m.

The project will install a replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C.

“The 360-foot, 80% replica of the original Vietnam Wall in Washington, D.C. has been in the works since arriving in Fort Wayne back in May of this year,” Commander Greg Bedford said in a news release. “COVID-19 has slowed both fundraising and construction scheduling for months. Hagerman Construction will start by installing all concrete footers and support structuring for the wall. Crosby Excavating will be preparing all property in and around the wall for further construction.”

Chris Harmon, director of field operations for Hagerman, is excited about this project.

“The Vietnam wall is an important monument that deserves the very best installation we can provide,” he said. “Working with our crews and volunteers, we hope to complete the initial phase now and have the finished wall ready for a Memorial Day dedication.”

The memorial has 58,320 names of fallen heroes inscribed on its anodized aluminum structure. A total of 1,534 individuals named on the wall are from the state of Indiana, and 79 of those were from Allen County.

The Veterans National Memorial Shrine and Museum continues to seek donations for completion of the project. Donations are accepted online at honoringforever.org or by mail to Veterans National Memorial Shrine and Museum, P.O. Box 26 Arcola, IN 46704. Donations can also be dropped off at the shrine and meseum.

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