Montana Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day

Press Release
Montana Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day, March 29, 2024.
FORT HARRISON/ HELENA, MT, March 20, 2024   

Montana, a Proud Partner with The U.S.A. Vietnam War Commemoration, is commemorating Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day on March 29, 2024, throughout the State.   This is a Vietnam War 50th Anniversary Commemorative Event sponsored by The Montana Governor’s Office, the Montana Department of Military Affairs, The Montana Military Museum, American Legion Post #2 (Lewis & Clark Post), the Oro Fino  Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution and the Veterans Administration (See “Proud partner(s) with The U.S. A. Vietnam War Commemoration”.

Helena Area Activities:  A program is scheduled to be conducted at the Montana Capital Complex and in the Capitol Rotunda on March 29th, 2024. This program will be a combination of Veterans Honor Walk starting from 6th and Robert, around the Capitol Building to the Freedom Tree and after a wreath laying ceremony moving into the Capitol Rotunda. 

The Governor’s annual proclamation plus other correspondence from the Veterans community will be read. Kenneth Rosenbaum., a   U.S.  Army Veteran of the Vietnam War will be our guest speaker.  Upon his arrival at Pleiku, Vietnam, Captain Kenneth  ‘Rosey’ Rosenbaum was assigned as a new Army helicopter pilot to the 189th Assault Helicopter Company (AHC) “Ghostriders”, 52nd Combat Aviation Battalion, 1st Aviation Brigade. 

After surviving many hundreds of combat assault insertions and combat support hours flying the ‘Huey’, or the Bell UH-1 Iroquois helicopter.  The UH-1 was a multipurpose utility helicopter widely used during the Vietnam War.  It was developed in the mid-1950s and shipped to Vietnam in 1958.  It performed various roles , such as medical evacuation, troop transport and attack.  The Huey was pivotal and defining feature of the War, shaping military tactics and influencing US military culture.

Rosenbaum came home and continued to fly with the Montana Army National Guard in Helena, Montana. His career flying included the smaller scout helicopters such as the OH-58 Kiowa and the AH-1 “Cobra” and   AH-64 “Apache” gunships. 

Rosy was one of the pilots that actually flew the Huey ‘Helena Gunship on the Pole’ at the airport. He completed his 28 years flying with over 1000 hours in the Blackhawk helicopter. He was a career test pilot and evaluator as a Chief Warrant Officer 4 (CW4). 

Like all Vietnam veterans, Rosy is now retired at 75 with lots of aviation memories both good and some not so good. Currently He is serving as the American Legion Commander of Post 2 here in Helena, Montana. 

Ken is married to Cindy and they have been blessed with  4 sons and now 28 Grand and great grandchildren.   Others in the family have also served.

Come and help us recognize our Vietnam Veterans, Families and Friends.

A reminder as to the schedule: 

1000-1030 – Gather in front of the Montana Historical Society. Corner of 6th and Roberts.  Parking is available around the Capital complex.  Instructions and route of march will be  provided. The March will begin at NLT 1030 and conclude at the Freedom Tree where the marchers will place a Wreath at the POW/MIA memorial Honor Walk will be on the sidewalks only.

The Rotunda Ceremony will start at 1100 hours.  Vietnam Veterans, Gold Star Families, POW-MIA families can receive a 50th Anniversary Pin for attending. 

INFORMATION: In 2011 the 62nd Montana Legislature enacted into law House Bill 255, entitled, “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day”.   The act established that annually on March 30th that Montana should recognize and thank its Vietnam Veterans with appropriate tributes.

This date was chosen based on the language of the 1973 Vietnam Peace Accords, in where the United States agreed to remove the remaining military units from the Republic of Vietnam within 60 days of signing that document.  Approximately 5500 personnel remained in Vietnam on March 29th, 1973.  Based on travel, March 30th was the arrival date in the US.      

In 2011, the United States Senate passed a congressional measure recognizing the 30 of March 2011, and every year to follow.  The Montana Legislature simultaneously acted with the passage of HB 255.  This established the day following the official end day of United States military presence in RVN.

Public Law 115-15 dated March 28, 2017, amended Title 4, United States Code, to encourage the display of the Flag on National Vietnam war Veterans Day.  Stated,” Be it enacted by the Senate And House of representatives of the United States of American.

in Congress assembled” Section 1, Short Title.  This act may be cited as the “Vietnam War Veterans recognition Act of 2017.”  Section 6(d) of Title 4, United States Code, is amended by inserting “National Vietnam Veterans Day, March 29;” after “third Monday in February;” Approved March 28, 2017. 

This effectively moved the official date of Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day to March 29, [each year].  This year’s date fall on Monday, March 29, 2021.

Montana state/community level event(s) are encouraged to recognize the over 36,000 Montana men and women who served in the Republic of Vietnam from 1959-1975.   

267 Montana men paid the ultimate price either killed in action (KIA) or died

from non-hostile causes during this period.  Twenty-two (22) Montanans were originally recognized as Prisoners of War (POW) and/or Missing in Action (MIA). 

Today five of our Montana POW/MIA’s has been returned home and efforts to locate and return the remainder go on day by day.    

Currently there are over 30,000 Vietnam Era  men and women veterans who call Montana home today.  This is as of September 2023 (reference VA. Gov statistics).  This number includes Vietnam veterans who have moved to the Big Sky after the close of the Vietnam War. Questions:  Call 406-235-0290/406-458-9847