Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall Stops in Quad Cities

MOLINE, Illinois  --  A replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial is crossing the United States, and is now in the Quad Cities.

The Wall that Heals is on display at Western Illinois University in Moline, Illinois, and is especially important to one Iowa family, according to WQAD's John David.

"You just have chills run down your back and get goose bumps on you of how close maybe your name could be on that wall," said former paratrooper Jon Harrison.

Three generations of the Harrison family visited the wall, which displays more than 58,000 names.

"None of them got to have grandchildren. None of them got to have children."

One name is especially important.

"We were in the same platoon."

Clayton Middleton was killed in action 50 years ago by the same land mine that wounded Harrison.

"It was really a tragedy when he was killed because we were so close," Harrison said.

To this day, John's son Matt wears Clayton's memorial bracelet.

"To come with somebody who was there and hear the stories is an important part of the cycle."

As visitors to the wall think about their own personal experience, Jon Harrison remembers connecting with his buddy's family.

"It was kind of a healing process for me. For some 40 years, this was in the back of my mind," he said.

All three generations understand a lasting lesson from the history that is still close to home.

The Wall that Heals will remain open through Sunday afternoon in Moline.