Thursday, November 03, 2011

Cumberland County, NC School System Honors Vietnam Veterans as Part of Heroes Homecoming

55,000 students take part in more than 100 activities leading up to Veterans Day

Fayetteville, NC – November 2, 2011 – More than 30 percent of students in the Cumberland County School System come from military families. So it’s fitting that the school system has put together a detailed list of resources and events all geared towards honoring Vietnamveteran heroes as part of Heroes Homecoming. Heroes Homecoming is a 60-event, 10-day celebration honoring and paying tribute to Vietnam vets from across the country. It will take place in Fayetteville/Cumberland County, NC, from November 4-13, 2011.

There is no other city in the country tied more closely to the Vietnam War and that entire period of our country’s history. More than 200,000 troops trained at Fayetteville’s Fort Bragg before being deployed to Vietnam. The community currently has both a considerable population of native-born Vietnamese and one of the highest concentrations of Vietnam veterans in the country. Yet there is still a great deal of misunderstanding among residents, especially the younger generation, about just what this history means. Heroes Homecoming is designed to celebrate the community’s history and cultural diversity, while promoting an atmosphere of appreciation between Fayetteville and Vietnam, and giving thanks to those who fought for us in that conflict.

“An event like Heroes Homecoming provides an unprecedented opportunity for our children to learn about that period in history,” said Frank Till, Superintendent of Cumberland County Schools. “I am very proud that our schools have the opportunity to honor the tremendous sacrifices of those who served during the Vietnam War.”

The Cumberland County School System, the fourth largest district in the state, is made up of 85 schools and nearly 55,000 students. From November 4-11, more than 100 activities will take place at the majority of elementary and secondary schools throughout the county. Many of these events will focus on the Vietnam War era and conflict.

All classes will invite parents, relatives or other Vietnam veterans to speak to students about their service. They will be invited to share their experiences, both good and bad, with older students during an interactive panel discussion.

Students will create and present artwork, poems and songs in honor of Vietnam vets. They will write letters of appreciation that will be delivered to local veteran hospitals and nursing homes. Students will have the opportunity to read books like “The Wall” and “The Lotus Seed” and to watch videos like “How Tiger Got His Stripes” and discuss their significance afterward.

Facts and statistics about the Vietnam War will be read over the PA system each day as part of the morning announcements. Students will bring in pictures and videotaped interviews of their veteran family and friends to share during “Vietnam Show and Tell.” There will be a school-wide moment of silence for Vietnam soldiers that were killed or injured in the war, as well as a breakfast and brunch held in honor of all Vietnam vets.

Students will learn about the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., and will have the opportunity to visit the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall that will be located at the Airborne and Special Operations Museum (ASOM) throughout Heroes Homecoming. Schools will also raise funds to purchase an “In Remembrance of Our Vietnam Veterans” brick paver at the ASOM.

The entire Heroes Homecoming curriculum can be viewed at

Heroes Homecoming is being held in partnership with the Fayetteville Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. All Heroes Homecoming events recognize the service and sacrifice of our Vietnam veterans, ranging from concerts and parades, to lectures and movie viewings, to cultural celebrations and recognition ceremonies. For more information on Heroes Homecoming, visit

About Heroes Homecoming: As America’s First Military Sanctuary Community, Fayetteville/Cumberland County is giving brave Vietnam veterans the welcome home they deserve. The community will host Heroes Homecoming – the biggest commemoration/reunion of its kind – for the 10 days leading up to Veterans Day 2011. The event series will feature celebrations, discussions, fellowship and memories for all those who attend. Heroes Homecoming is Fayetteville/Cumberland County’s way of showing all Vietnam veterans that we remember and appreciate their courage, their sacrifice and everything they’ve done to defend our freedom – now and forever.

About the FACVB: The Fayetteville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau is a private, not-for-profit organization responsible for positioning Fayetteville/Cumberland County as a destination for conventions, sporting events and individual travel. For additional information, visit or call 1-800-255-8217. Fayetteville/Cumberland County is America's first military sanctuary. Through the Army's Army and other volunteer groups, our citizens and businesses are dedicated to “watching over those who watch over us ©.”

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