Vietnam Veterans of America Queens (N.Y.) Chapter 32 saw one of its pet projects completed when the new Queens Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Elmhurst Park opened Dec. 20, 2019. The memorial features two walls of granite bearing the names of 371 Queens natives who died or were classified MIA during the war or as a result of it.
Former Chapter 32 President Pat Toro came up with the idea for the memorial and spearheaded the campaign to build it before his death in 2014. Current chapter President Manuel Edenhofer, former group president Michael O’Kane and Vietnam Veterans of American National President John Rowan were instrumental in continuing to seek the funding.
“One of the last things [Toro] said to me was in regard to this memorial: ‘Get it done,’ he said,” veteran Michael O’Kane told the Queens Ledger at the groundbreaking in November 2018. “This was literally his dying wish.”