The Letter from Janet (Reproduced on left)
Certificate of AuthenticityDearest Tony,
When I first saw this in a gift shop you immediately came to mind. For a few weeks, whenever I went into the shop, I would first drop by the showcase and admire this piece of art and then I let my mind wander to another place, another time. This piece of art stood among other figurines that held no particular meaning. It was as though it reached out to me, and I know if anyone would be moved and feel the tenderness, love, and many more emotions for their fellow man, you topped the list. Touching it was almost sacred.
I wanted to include words of rhyme, which I did start, but could not finish.
The pain and suffering which you’ve endured, some of us will never see or feel. I know what it meant to you to visit The Wall. Overcome by emotions, you recited your poetry, words from the heart, which you left there, along with all the moments left by people; words that told your ‘brothers’ how you felt, and how you felt about the over 58,000 names stretching as far as the eye could take in. Not one of those over 58,000 names would lack someone to mourn for them. You mourned for them all.
Please accept this gift as a treasure of our mutual friendship and bond.
Janet and Bernie
Bernie and Janet Rattay: February 2007
Anthony W. Pahl OAM with Janet and Bernie’s gift, “The Vietnam Wall” figurine: February 14, 2007