VFW ‘Ride For Healing’ stops in Monticello Memorial Day

Monticello will be a rally point for the weeklong “Ride For Healing” organized by the Department of Minnesota Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Veterans and community members are invited to USS Dorchester VFW Post 8731 on Monday, May 27.
The statewide event starts May 27 and ends June 2. The commemorative ride starts Memorial Day with a Minnesota Vietnam Veterans Memorial ceremony.  Four motorcycle rider teams will leave St. Paul and travel to all four corners of the state.
Vietnam veteran recognition rallies will be held in more than 60 communities over a four-day period, including Monticello, which will be the third “Team Charlie” stop on May 27.
The rally hosted by VFW Post 8731 is scheduled from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Four teams will ride into the Brainerd Lakes area for two days of events starting May 31. Various entertainment events have been scheduled at Cragun’s, Crow Wing County Fairgrounds and other sites.
The center of attention will be a visit by the AVTT Traveling Wall, a replica of the National Vietnam Veterans Memorial in. In addition, there will be a June 1 special recognition ceremony at the fairgrounds.
The 2013 VFW  Minnesota State Commander Lee Ulferts  has designated the project  as a fundraiser for  the Vietnam Education Center in Washington D.C.
Vietnam veterans will be recognized throughout the state. It is Ulferts’ passion and belief outstate Minnesota Vietnam veterans have never had the chance to be recognized and honored for their service.
This will be an attempt to provide them with that honor and to welcome them home and give them a chance for healing.
The Education Center at The Wall is the newest initiative of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund.
Approved by Congress in 2003 the Education Center is going to be a two-story underground facility adjacent to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
Every year, millions of people from across the country visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the Washington Mall, and many of these visitors no longer fully understand the context and importance of the memorial and its historical era.
For many, the Vietnam War is part of the distant past.
More than 40 percent of the 4 million visitors to The Wall each year are too young to remember what had been the longest war in America.
To them, the long list of names etched in the smooth black granite is faceless; they have no context, no connection.
The Education Center at The Wall will be a place that touches the heart and teaches the mind, enhancing the Memorial experience for people of all ages and walks of life.
The Education Center at the Wall will tell interactive stories and pay tribute to American service members lost in the Vietnam War.
It will also serve as a memorial for veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan until their memorial is secured.
For more information about the VFW rally and events, visit www.rideforhealingcom.
USS Dorchester VFW Post 8731 is located at 713 S. Cedar St. in Monticello.