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24-hour vigil at Vietnam Veterans Memorial

15 Medal of Honor recipients to join vigil

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[April 23, 2013]  SPRINGFIELD -- Fifteen Medal of Honor recipients will join an annual vigil at the Illinois Vietnam Veterans Memorial to honor those who served during the Vietnam War. The May 4-5 event marks the 25th anniversary of the memorial's dedication.

This 24-hour vigil begins with an opening ceremony at 11 a.m. May 4 at the memorial, located in Springfield's Oak Ridge Cemetery. The Illinois Vietnam Veterans Memorial Vigil organization will formally start the vigil at noon.

That evening at 6, there will be a ceremony to remember the 66 remaining Illinois men listed as prisoners of war or missing in action.

The closing ceremony will be at 11 a.m. on May 5. The 24-hour vigil will conclude with the retiring of the honor guard.

The vigil and all ceremonies are free and open to the public.

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The Illinois Vietnam Veterans Memorial, dedicated May 7, 1988, is made of five polished, black granite walls that create five courtyards. Each courtyard is dedicated to one of the five branches of service and shows the service insignia. The walls are etched with the names of the 2,998 Illinois servicemen who died or are missing.

The Illinois Vietnam Veterans Memorial is administered by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.

[Text from file received from the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency]

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