President Ronald Reagan & The Vietnam Veteran's Memorial
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In 1982, The Vietnam Veteran's Memorial was nearing completion when Bob Chapin visited in search of comrades killed in Vietnam.
He eventually located the names of his friends, but also found the name of his best friend in high school. Surprisingly, Arvie's name appeared in the depth of field in one of Bob's photographs.
A call to Arvie's mother confirmed that he had been killed in a fiery helicopter crash in January of 1969. He was a helicopter pilor shot down by enemy fire. Angry and bitter with what the war had created, in 15 minutes Bob wrote one of America's most poignant poster poems of the war.
It received national acclaim and through his congressman was invited to present a framed copy to The President. Just prior to the event where Bob was to present his poster poem THE WALL to the congressman called to inform Bob that the meeting was cancelled as the Marine barracks in Beirut has been bombed killing 241 Americans.
The President, in appreciation compiled a letter of thanks to Bob. The Congressman personally presented the framed copy of The Wall to Mr. Reagan in The Oval Office. As a result of local newspapers covering the event, the poster sold in excess of 250,000 copies.
This is a true story.