Re-enactments of famous wars and battles is a fairly common occurrence in this country. Most are Civil War battles followed by those from the American revolution and a few from World War II. You don’t hear much about Vietnam re-enactments but they do happen from time to time. In this episode we will take a look at one happening in Elgin, Illinois. It is reported on in a story from The Daily Herald of Elgin, Illinois titled: Rare Vietnam re-enactments coming to Elgin by Dave Gathman Daily Herald correspondent.
Gathman reports that the Event spokesman Rick Pennington, who teaches social studies at Hampshire Middle School and lives in Marengo, said Vietnam re-enactments are rare, because while the American Revolution inspires us, the Civil War stirs us and World War II is seen as “the last good war,” Vietnam remains a hot potato. Pennington a 34-year-old Elgin is a self described ” history geek.” His grandfather served as an Army medic during World War II and he liked to hear him talk about his experiences in that war.
He began to collect equipment and weapons from World War II which he would take to weekend gatherings of re-enactors. He met eleven other re-enactors from his neighborhood west of Chicago who expressed an interest in doing re-enactments of the Vietnam War. With the help of Scott Adams, a Roscoe, Illinois, native who had served in Vietnam in the Second Battalion of the 327th Infantry Regiment, part of the legendary 101st Airborne Division they formed a new unit called the 2/327th Vietnam Re-Enactment Group.
After taking part in shows in the southern part of the state they are now planning to hold a show in the Chicago suburb of Elgin. It will be called “Return to the A Shau,” a rather unnerving thought to anyone who was anywhere near that valley during the Vietnam War.
Pennington has done a good job in setting up this show and all in the area are encouraged to come and see it to learn about a painful piece of American history.
When: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday
Where: Camp Big Timber, 37W955 Big Timber Road, between Elgin and Gilberts
Admission: $5; free for veterans and kids 5 and younger
More information: See 2/327th Re-Enactment Group Facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org