Vietnam Veterans Memorial Park
Long Wharf Dr at I-95
New Haven, New Haven County, Connecticut
"In honor of those who served
during the Korean War
from the greater New Haven area
Forgotten No More
Freedom Is Not Free"
"These gave their lives
Rest in peace"
"1959 - 1975
This memorial is dedicated in honor of the
men and women who served during the VietNam War
from the surrounding cities and towns
New Haven, East Haven, West Haven, North Haven,
Hamden, Orange, Woodbridge"
"VietNam Memorial New Haven
This path is situated on Longitude 72º 55' 29" West
On the opposite side of the earth
on this line
"In recognition of their service in the War Against Terrorism
1st Battalion 102d Infantry
Serving the New Haven area since 1638
These gave their lives defending our freedom
May God bless America and all those who serve to protect her
Erected May 2009 by Frank Carrano MSG, Army Retired"
"Dedicated to all men and women
wounded in all our wars
My stone is red for the blood they shed
The medal I bear is my country's way
to show they care
If I could be seen by all mankind
maybe peace will come in my lifetime
Erected by Dept of Connecticut
Military Order of The Purple Heart"
I am constantly amazed at how the placement of any memorial can immediately set the tone of a visit. In this case one of the busiest roadways of America, I-95 leading into New York City, rises immediately behind me, but I am oblivious to it as the monuments force me to look beyond them over Long Island Sound and out to the ocean. I believe it would be difficult to allow the noise and hustle behind any visitor to intrude upon the purpose of the visit.
The Korean War broke out on June 25th, 1950. The first of many New Haven losses came just days later, on July 11th, when MSgt Alex Danowski, US Army was taken prisoner. Danowski was assigned to L Co, 3rd BN, 21st Inf Reg, 24th Inf Divsion. He was 33 years old and had made the Army his career, he got his Combat Infantry Badge when serving in WW II.
Love Company and the rest of the units of the 21st Infantry had been ordered to hold their positions at Chochiwon "at all costs." The 21st had been rushed to Korea from its occupation duties in Japan. They were not fully manned, and certainly not ready to face the enemy that met them. For many soldiers in Love Company the term "at all costs" meant that death, or capture, was almost certain. About three dozen died on July 11th and another 55 were taken prisoner.
Approximately 20 of those captives survived to repatriation in 1953. The Love Company solders became part of a large assembly of prisoners that endure the "Tiger Death March" toward Siberia. Over 66 percent of that larger collection did not survive the war. They were murdered by pistol shot, beaten to death with rifle butts, whipped to death, starved, stabbed and abused in every possible manner. The soldiers of North Korea were brutal - and none were ever held to account for their crimes. That war ended in a truce, no winner was declared and any suggestion that justice be done was never heard, nor was it possible.