Crossing the Divide: The Texas Panhandle Vietnam War Project

The Wall That Heals Visited Amarillo

Panhandle PBS honored those who served in the Vietnam War by hosting a visit from The Wall That Heals. As part of the station’s ongoing Crossing the Divide: The Texas Panhandle Vietnam War Project surrounding the Ken Burns and Lynn Novick film The Vietnam War, The Wall was installed Wednesday, Dec. 6 through Sunday, Dec. 10 at John Stiff Memorial Park.
The Wall is a half-scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., accompanied by a Mobile Education Center. It was open to the public to visit 24 hours a day to honor U.S. armed forces service members who fought in the Vietnam War, the more than 58,000 service men and women who lost their lives in Vietnam/Southeast Asia, and those service members who were unaccounted for during the War.
The Wall arrived by motorcycle escort before being installed by volunteers from CNS Pantex.  Over 400 area school students took part in tours of the Wall, learning about the Wall’s design, history, and the Vietnam War itself.  Area organizations brought wreaths to honor those whose names are on the Wall, and both a Welcome Ceremony and Closing Ceremony were held for the public. The Wall was deinstalled by volunteers from Xcel Energy.
Supporters of The Wall that Heals’ Amarillo visit are The Mary E. Bivins Foundation, WETA – Washington D.C., CNS Pantex, Happy State Bank, Xcel Energy, and Mary Emeny.  The City of Amarillo generously served as the site host for The Wall that Heals. Additional support was provided by Amarillo College, UniFirst, Graymac, Inc., Rabern Rentals, A-1 Rocket, Raising Cane’s Chick Fil-A on Georgia St., Pepsi, Rib Crib, Teddy Jack’s and Wal-Mart.  Over 100 volunteers from the area generously gave their time in assisting visitors and serving as honor guards, including many Vietnam Veterans.  
For information on the The Wall that Heals’ visit to Amarillo or the Texas Panhandle Vietnam War Project, please explore this website, or call Panhandle PBS at 806-371-5479.  For more on The Wall that Heals, please visit http://www.vvmf.org/twth.

Supporters of The Wall that Heals’ Amarillo visit are The Mary E. Bivins Foundation, WETA – Washington D.C., CNS Pantex, Happy State Bank, Xcel Energy, and Mary Emeny.  Volunteers from CNS Pantex and Xcel Energy are installing and deinstalling The Wall, respectively.

For information on Crossing the Divide and The Wall That Heals, visit PanhandleRemembers.org or call Panhandle PBS at 806-371-5479.

THE VIETNAM WAR from Ken Burns and Lynn Novick

Find out more about the new Ken Burns and Lynn Novick film THE VIETNAM WAR at pbs.org/thevietnamwar.

Crossing the Divide: The Texas Panhandle Vietnam War Project is a community-wide effort to explore, learn from, and come together around the topic of the Vietnam War.

It centers around the premiere of THE VIETNAM WAR from Ken Burns and Lynn Novick - an epic 10 part documentary series which can be streamed in its entirety on streaming devices as well as loaned from the Amarillo Public Library.

Project activities take place across the Texas Panhandle through December, 2017, with numerous partners lending guidance and leading a variety of activities including story collection efforts, resource development for educators, art and historical exhibitions, local productions, panel discussions, lectures, music concerts, film screenings, and more.

Take part.  Watch, learn, volunteer, support.  Join us as we explore the Vietnam War and strive to understand, honor, and heal, right here in the Texas Panhandle.

Local Stories

Hank Dompe

Navy veteran Hanke Dompe served on the USS Midway, an aircraft carrier, in the Gulf of Tonkin from 1965 to 1968. Only recently did he gather the courage he needed to visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C. He talks about his experience with Karen Welch.

Myron Peterson

Myron Peterson recalls conditions in Vietnam the day he arrived in August of 1968. He was a 19-year-old Army infantryman.

Richard Dunn

Pampa resident Richard “Rick” Dunn forged his parents’ signatures so he could join the U.S. Army and arrived in Vietnam in 1967 for the first of two tours. Dunn gives his account of a firefight that turned into hand-to-hand combat when his group ran out of ammunition. Several died.

More local stories here.

Project Partners

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Project Supporters


The Mary E. Bivins Foundation


Happy State Bank

CNS Pantex

Xcel Energy

Mary Emeny

National support for THE VIETNAM WAR is provided by:

Bank of America; Corporation for Public Broadcasting; PBS; David H. Koch; Blavatnik Family Foundation; Park Foundation; The ArthurVining Davis Foundations; The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation; The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; National Endowment for the Humanities; The Pew Charitable Trusts; Ford Foundation Just Films; Rockefeller Brothers Fund; and Members of The Better Angels Society: Jonathan & Jeannie Lavine, Diane & Hal Brierley, Amy & David Abrams, John & Catherine Debs, Fullerton Family Charitable Fund, The Montrone Family, Lynda & Stewart Resnick, The Golkin Family Foundation, The Lynch Foundation, The Roger & Rosemary Enrico Foundation, Richard S. & Donna L. Strong Foundation, Bonnie & Tom McCloskey, Barbara K. & Cyrus B. Sweet III, and The Lavender Butterfly Fund.