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Two new tributes to Vietnam veterans.



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Minister for Veterans' Affairs Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence

Tuesday 15 August 2006 VA083

TWO NEW TRIBUTES TO VIETNAM VETERANS

Vietnam: our war - our peace, a book dedicated to all those who served, suffered and died in the Vietnam war and their families, and the online Nominal Roll of Vietnam Veterans were launched by the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Bruce Billson at Parliament House today.

Mr Billson said it was fitting to launch these tributes this week as the nation prepares to honour those who served in the Army, Navy and Air Force during the Vietnam War on Vietnam Veterans’ Day, 18 August.

“This year also marks the 40th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan, a defining battle for Australians in the Vietnam War.

“Long Tan is one of many important engagements by Australian forces in Vietnam. The courage, skill and commitment of all those involved in this battle was characteristic of all of our service personnel throughout the Vietnam War,” he said.

Vietnam: our war - our peace contains 44 personal accounts, one for each year since Australians were first sent to Vietnam 44 years ago. They range from combat experience and nursing in a Vietnamese hospital to stories about honouring and caring for fellow veterans. It also includes stories from family members about the effect of the war on them. (List of contributors)

Another important tribute launched today is the online Nominal Roll of Vietnam Veterans. The site, part of this Government’s commemorative initiatives to recognise the service and sacrifice of Australians who served in Vietnam, will ‘go live’ today with the primary details of name, service, service number and unit title.

The site includes key information about the Vietnam War and will be a valuable resource for veterans and their families and the wider community. The Department of Veterans’ Affairs aims to enhance the site with additional details - up to 14 different data fields - by Vietnam Veterans’ Day next year.

“I am honoured to be launching these two tributes to such a deserving veteran community. Australia is proud of the contribution of Vietnam veterans, not only in Vietnam, but to our society over the past four decades,” Mr Billson said.

The online nominal roll of Vietnam veterans can be found at www.vietnamroll.gov.au.

Media inquiries: Cameron Hill 0408 239 521