Several years ago, when a traveling replica of "The Wall," the Vietnam National Memorial in Washington, D.C., came to Salt Lake City, thousands of Utahns visited it.

Now Utahns now have an opportunity to work together in the construction of a memorial for this state's Vietnam war dead and missing and to honor those who served in that long war and others.The state has donated land for construction of a circular memorial on the hillside west of the Capitol. Four polished marble tablets, bearing the names of the 364 Utahns killed and the 11 missing, will constitute the east wall of the memorial.

An heroic-sized eight-foot bronze statute of an infantryman facing away from the names will be set on a cast stone base in the center of the memorial.

The memorial will be set in a grove of mature trees just west of the Capitol entrance and is designed to be a place for quiet meditation.

The Vietnam Era Veterans Memorial Committee Inc. is conducting a fund drive to raise $231,000 to construct the memorial and provide a perpetual care fund. The memorial will be made of the finest materials, in keeping with the standards of the Capitol building. The obituary plaques will be made of polished black granite to match the Washington Memorial.

Since the war's peak in 1968, another generation has come along. As those who fought in Vietnam grow older, their children and grandchildren now wonder what the war was about. This is the time to build a lasting memorial to those who gave their all at a time when too many others scorned them and their sacrifices.

Those wishing to donate - and we urge all to do so - can contact the Vietnam Era Veterans Memorial Committee, Inc. by writing to P.O. Box 148, Provo, Utah 84603 or telephoning 377-1117.