Angelo State University’s Department of History and West Texas Collection will host a live screening of an official U.S. Congressional Ceremony commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War on Wednesday, July 8, in the Houston Harte University Center, 1910 Rosemont Drive.

Activities begin at 1:30 p.m. in the University Center’s Nasworthy Suite (Room 203/204) and are open free to the public. The Congressional Ceremony will run from 2-3 p.m. in the Emancipation Hall of the U.S. Capitol Visitors Center in Washington, D.C., and will be streamed live to select locations around the world. The purpose of the ceremony is to thank and honor the 7.2 million living Vietnam veterans and the 9 million families of those who served.

The ASU entities are hosting the event as members of the EC-47 History Site Commemorative Partners Committee, which is an official partner in the national U.S.A. Vietnam War Commemoration initiative. Only Commemorative Partners are eligible to receive the streaming of the congressional ceremony. Local committee members will be introduced at the ASU event and will be available to answer questions following the screening.

Attendees of the screening will also be invited to tour the “Vietnam: Through the Lens” exhibits currently on display in the West Texas Collection on the second floor of the University Center. Additionally, the ASU History Department’s War Stories project will have representatives available to collect the stories, memorabilia and other items from any veterans in attendance.

The San Angelo-based EC-47 committee also includes representatives of the San Angelo Chamber of Commerce, Tom Green County All Veterans Council, San Angelo Vietnam Veterans Association, the local Heritage Chapter of the Freedom Through Vigilance Association and the Elks Lodge. The committee was formed by retired Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Tom Nurre, a Vietnam veteran, director of the award-winning EC-47 ARDF History Exhibit at Goodfellow AFB and co-director of the  EC-47 History website.

During the Vietnam War, Air Force personnel trained at Goodfellow AFB for airborne radio direction finding (ARDF) duties carried out aboard EC-47 reconnaissance aircraft. Manning more than 60 EC-47 “Gooney Birds,” those personnel completed thousands of airborne recon missions in support of U.S. and Allied operations throughout Southeast Asia. A restored EC-47 aircraft stands on static display outside Goodfellow’s Norma Brown Headquarters Building, and the ARDF History Exhibit in the building’s foyer is in the shape of an EC-47 fuselage. Check out the official history site for the ARDF mission and personnel.

For more information on the ASU screening event, call the West Texas Collection at 325-942-2164. More details on the U.S.A. Vietnam War Commemoration initiative are available.