Sunday, October 19, 2003

Healing Wall

I visited Camp Nelson Heritage park In Jessamine County yesterday.  I try to avoid Nicholasville Rd. as much as possible, but I braved the Saturday traffic to go see the Traveling Vietnam Wall Memorial.

This is a half-scale replica of the memorial in the nations capitol.  All 58,000+ names of the veterans killed or MIA are half-scale, but the emotion and honor surrounding the county side yesterday was nothing half-scale.

I wish I could figure out how to use my digital camera so I could share the images with you all.

At approximately 130pm, the Rolling Thunder arrived. For as far as the eye could see, they came. 200 bikes at least.  Following a lead motorcyle displaying the black POW/MIA flag along side the American flag.

Black leather, gray hair, salt and pepper beards, canes, balding heads, and limps they came to pay their respects. 

At the bottom of a sloping hill  stood a man in the full Scottish kilt uniform, playing  the soft mournful sounds of a lone bag pipe  as the bikers dismounted and slowly made their way to the Wall.

I knew plenty of men who went to Nam.  I am unusually blessed that everyone I knew came home.  Yet looking at all those names on the Wall I felt like I knew them.  Knew of them, we all do.

One name jumped out at me.  Jimmie Joe Jett.  What a great name.  What a great life, a special life he could have had.  He was one of 58,229 who gave their lives that this world be a better place not only for Americans, but for everyone.

2 comments:

gil said...

Growing up in Los Angeles, Jimmie Joe
Jett was one of seven Jett's.
Jimmie was one amazing young man and my best friend.
I recently visited his grave to honor my friend and visit him on his 60th birthday. It was as if no time had passed, as I viewed his grave marker.
Thanks for mentioning this fallen soldier and never forgotten friend.
Regards, Gilbert Ortiz, L.A. Calif.

Donna Jett said...

This was my late husbands brother. He was a wonderful person that I was not lucky enough to meet although I have always felt as though I have known him. My husband and I would talk about Jimmie often . Sadly my husband and Jimmie kept missing each other in Germany and in Viet Nam.
I too went to visit Jimmie on his 60th birthday.
Recently the traveling wall was in Simi Valley , Ca. I was able to make editching's of Jimmie Joe Jett .
There are many family member's that were named after this wonderful fallen soldier.
He is loved and missed by many.
I can only hope that my husband is at piece and the two are together again.
Thank you for this post.Gil thank you for the link.
Donna Jett
Reseda,Ca.