Kifowit and Huynh Honors Vietnam Veterans on 50th Anniversary of the End of the Vietnam War
Representatives Kifowit and Huynh are joined by Representative Walker (a Vietnam Veteran), Representative Benton, Illinois Veterans Affairs Director Terry Prince, along with many American Vietnam Veterans and Army of the Republic of Vietnam soldiers who fought alongside them.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – On the 50th anniversary of end of the Vietnam War, state Rep. Stephanie Kifowit, D-Oswego and the first Vietnamese American and refugee to serve in the General Assembly, state Rep. Hoan Huynh along with Vietnam Veteran state Rep. Mark Walker, joined American Vietnam Veterans and Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) Veteran soldiers who served alongside them, at the Capitol Wednesday to recognize their contributions and to remember their sacrifice.
“Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day is a day to honor and thank those brave service members, my fellow Veterans, who served in the Vietnam War and to make an extra effort to those who did not receive the recognition and appreciation they deserved upon returning home,” Kifowit said. “We have to continually acknowledge that the Vietnam War was a very challenging and divisive time in American history. Many Veterans faced extreme hate, publicly vilified, shunned and even spat on. Many troops were told to not wear their uniforms to avoid verbal and physical attacks. I have been blessed to call many Vietnam Veterans my friends, and I will ensure that Illinois will always do our part to show proper appreciation to the men and women who served so bravely during the Vietnam War.”
Representative Kifowit, along with Representative Huynh, presented and passed House Resolution 104, designating March 29 as “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day” in Illinois. More than 58,000 members of the United State Armed Forces lost their lives in Vietnam, and upon returning home, many Veterans were not recognized – instead caught in a public debate regarding the United States’ involvement. House Resolution 104 underscores how Vietnam Veterans instead chose to support and recognize Veterans of later conflicts, and of their continuing service to communities today. Joining Representatives Kifowit and Huynh were many members of the South Vietnamese community, including Army of the Republic of Vietnam soldiers in their uniform. The profound appreciation of the involvement of American troops in Vietnam was expressed throughout the day.
"I was honored to present House Resolution 104 with my friend Representative Huynh," continued Kifowit. "Representative Huynh's family history, as a son of an ARVN soldier, embodies that our involvement in Vietnam was justified and needed".
All members of the Illinois House of Representatives were co-sponsors on House Resolution 104 and was passed unanimously on March 29, 2023.