“Coming Home: Helena Area Vietnam Veterans” is the name of photography exhibit that will be on view beginning November 9 at the Myrna Loy Center f or the Performing and Media Arts in Helena, Montana.
The exhibit is centered around photographic portraits of sixteen local Vietnam veterans taken by Michael Lee, a U.S. Navy Vietnam veteran (third from left in photo above at a 2012 reunion with USS Arikara shipmates ) and a life member of Vietnam Veterans of America.
“The primary reason” for the project, Lee says, “stems from the reception that Vietnam veterans received on their return home. ” The exhibit, he says, “is a remembrance and, I hope, a salve for some Vietnam veterans. “
The veterans in the photos “have one thing in common: they are veteran advocates. Many were and some still are engaged in public service. These Vietnam veterans have served to bond together our Helena community. Their distinguishing characteristic, however, is their passionate advocacy for other veterans: they will never forget and will always serve fellow veterans.”
Ken Inabnit, a Vietnam veteran who recently was named as Montana’s civilian aide to the Secretary of the Army, will be the featured speaker at the exhibit’s opening.
After the exhibit closes, Lee plans to donate the photos to the Montana Military Museum , which is located at the Fort Harrison complex in Helena.