Del Vecchio wrote the Vietnam War novel, “The 13th Valley,” which was a finalist for the American Book Award in 1983. The New York Times book review said, “There have been a number of excellent books about Vietnam... but none has managed to communicate in such detail the day-to-day pain, discomfort, frustration and exhilaration of the American military experience in Vietnam.”
“The Memorial Walk is intended to keep alive the memories of our military men and women and their major influence on history,” said association president Gerry Lewis. “It’s important to remember their sacrifices, and we believe the Veterans Memorial Walk will be a unique and moving tribute to all who served. I’m especially pleased to have John Del Vecchio as the keynote speaker. His novels preserve the stories of a generation of those who served.”
The four-acre memorial walk will be a meditative memorial in a quiet portion of Newtown Park. It will consist of a trail with black granite memorials for each major conflict dating to World War I. The entrance plaza will have a brick sitting wall and flags for each branch of service. A gazebo will rest amid the walking paths. Completion is tentatively set for Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2014. The project is estimated to cost about $200,000. The association is accepting donations online or by check for the monuments, benches, entrance plaza, gazebo and engraved pavers to be located near the monuments. The ground-breaking ceremony begins Nov. 9 at 10 a.m. at 3125 Old Alabama Road in Johns Creek.
Del Vecchio will be available for book-signing after the ceremony, but attendees should bring their own copies of his book as books will not be sold at the event.
For more information on the Veterans Association or the Memorial Walk, email JohnsCreekVets@gmail.com.