My son and I went to the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial and Museum on Saturday in Holmdel; we went because they have a scholarship competition - students need to tour the Museum and Memorial and write an essay on their experience.

It wasn’t very crowded when we arrived and we were paired up with a guide named Jim McGinnist. Jim (or Mac) is from Bergen County and he was absolutely amazing. His knowledge of not only the Vietnam War, but the entire era was incredible; I guess I should point out that Jim is a Vietnam vet if there was any doubt. I won’t bore you with all the details of our visit, but suffice it to say it was two hours well spent. Just seeing the names on the wall is moving. I grew up hearing about Vietnam but as my son is only 17, I didn’t know how he would respond; he told me in the parking lot that he hadn’t been looking forward to the tour but after seeing and hearing everything, he was really glad he went. If you want to go, its right on the grounds of the PNC Bank Arts Center; just follow the signs.