Chicago to Get Korean War Museum
June 2, 2011
By Kevin Olsen
The U.S. House of Representatives voted last week to amend the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, clearing the way for a Korean War museum to be built in Chicago.
U.S. Rep Dan Lipinski (D-3, Western Springs) sponsored the amendment, which calls for the establishment of a national Korean War museum in Chicago. Lipinski spokesman Nathaniel Zimmer said a temporary location will open soon to draw attention to the museum, with a permanent structure slated for completion by 2015.
“The Korean War is often referred to as ‘The Forgotten War,’ but the mark it left on those who served and on the history of America, Korea, and the world is indelible,” Lipinski stated in a press release. “A group of dedicated individuals, led by Korean War veteran Denis Healy, has begun work on locating a Korean War National Museum in Chicago. Together with my colleague from Illinois, Rep. Peter Roskam, I introduced this amendment to support the effort to establish such a museum, which will educate the public about the Korean War, commemorate the sacrifices made by those who served, and celebrate the advances in freedom and democracy made by South Korea. The veterans of this important conflict deserve our recognition, honor, and appreciation. A national museum will ensure that what they accomplished will forever be remembered.”
The museum will be run privately with no direct funding from the federal government.
Lipinski got involved with the effort after recently joining the National Advisory Council of the Korean War National Museum. The amendment puts Congress on record in support of establishing a national Korean War Museum in Chicago. It also commends those spearheading the effort to establish such a museum, and expresses support for increasing awareness of the sacrifices made by American soldiers in Korea.
A precursor to the museum, the Denis Healy Freedom Center, opened in Springfield in 2009. The center features exhibits and a growing collection of artifacts.
“Having recently joined the National Advisory Council of the Korean War National Museum, I was very pleased to offer this amendment and to see it pass, especially given that Memorial Day is just a few days away,” Lipinski stated. “We owe it to all those who served in Korea to establish a national museum commemorating the war, and Chicago is the perfect place for it.”
Some 36,574 Americans died in the Korean War between 1950 and 1953, making it the fifth-deadliest conflict in U.S. history.
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