It was more than ten years after the war in Vietnam ended that a monument was unveiled on Veterans Day, 1983
to a crowd of more than 200 in downtown DeLand, Florida honoring the service of all who served during the Vietnam War. While not specifically dedicated to local service members, “this monument is dedicated to those people who made their individual sacrifices. That’s what this ceremony is all about. Not just to the killed in action and the missing in action, but to all the Vietnam vets” were the words spoken by John Allen, who spearheaded the monument committee for the Sunrise Kiwanis Club of DeLand.
The beautiful African black granite monument weighs 3,600 pounds. The Kiwanis raised over $5,000 in order to fund the project. The monument is inscribed; “In appreciation to members of our armed forces who served in Viet-Nam.” Four service branch emblems are engraved on each side and the DeLand Sunshine Kiwanis name and 1983 is inscribed at the bottom.
The keynote speaker for the event was Major General Maurice O. Edmonds. At the time of the event, Major General Edmonds was serving as Deputy Chief of Staff of Training at the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command. General Edmonds discussed the importance of duty, stating, “The same call to duty to the nation demonstrated by our forefathers still exists in the young generation of Americans today.”
Major General Edmonds had a long and distinguished career with awards and decorations including the Silver Star, the Defense Superior Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star with four oak leaf clusters, Meritorious Service Medal, amongst others.
The monument is located on Indiana Avenue adjacent to the Thomas C. Kelly Administration Building, 123 W. Indiana. Indiana Avenue features one-way traffic and there is parking on both sides of the street. There are also parking lots located within easy walking distance of the monument.
Daytona Beach Morning Journal November 11, 1983
DeLand Sun News November 12, 1983
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