ON THIS HALLOWED GROUND: Vietnam Memorial Born From Tragedy
In the fury of battle, ideology and good intentions meet the harsh reality of survival and politics. Young lives are cut short by the edge of a bayonet or the pull of a trigger, and the aftermath is filled with the broken hearts of those who loved them. Such was the case for Victor “Doc” Westphall and his wife, Jeanne, when they were told by the Marine Corps that their son, Lt. David Westphall, had died in an ambush at Con Thien in Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam. The crushing news left them with an unavoidable question that haunts millions who have lost loved ones in the tragedy of War: “What do we do now?”
For Doc and Jeanne, their response was to honor the only thing that is worthy of honor in fatal conflict—the sons and daughters, mothers and fathers who fought and bled when their country called. Their response became a battle of its own. Through financial struggles, political controversy, and a broken spirit, they succeeded in building a place to heal the brokenhearted and honor their boy. This is the story of the Peace and Brotherhood Chapel in Angel Fire, New Mexico, which has become a place revered by veterans and their families from both sides of the conflict. And which now stands as a beacon calling all wounded hearts to heal and giving honor to them all.