Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall

News Release: Park Police: Vietnam Veterans Memorial Was Vandalised

18 September 2007

The U.S. Park Police ruled today that the oily substance spread on sections of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and on the paving stones was an act of vandalism. Park Police spokesman Sgt. Robert Lachance stressed that the investigation is ongoing and would not offer further comment.

The National Park Service continues working to identify and remove the substance. Because it is not yet known what was spread on The Wall and paving stones, the National Park Service's (NPS) Preservation and Maintenance Staff is working with the most gentle of techniques to ensure the substance's removal, but also to ensure that the substance is not pushed into the granite stonework or grouting.

“We believe the American public would want the NPS to do the preservation and restoration work properly and not to move in a hasty manner,” said NPS spokesman Bill Line. “If the preservation work takes another week or two or more, it is more important to perform the removal properly than to move quickly and thus risk long-term damage.”

NPS urges concerned citizens to be patient with the cleanup and investigative work.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund is continuing to monitor the situation and has offered its help to both NPS and the Park Police. It has contacted the stoneworkers who work on The Wall to get their expert advice.

“We deplore this act of vandalism on one of America’s sacred places,” said Memorial Fund Founder and President Jan C. Scruggs.

Established in 1979, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund is the nonprofit organization authorized by Congress to build the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Today, through a series of outreach programs, it is dedicated to preserving the legacy of The Wall, promoting healing, educating about the impact of the Vietnam War and is building the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Center, an underground educational facility, near The Wall.
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