Viet Nam News
THÁI NGUYÊN – Efforts to honour war veterans, martyrs’ families and those who contributed to the national revolutionary cause should not end with slogans but practical actions which cared for their material and spiritual lives, said National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân yesterday while attending a ceremony in Thái Nguyên Province in honour of 60 young war martyrs who died on December 24, 1972.
The sacrifice of the young volunteers from Team 951 at Lưu Xá Station in Thái Nguyên City was a huge loss to Việt Nam’s Youth Volunteer Brigade, she said. Most of them were unmarried, from ethnic minority groups or Catholic.
The 20-year-olds were tasked with fixing roads damaged by the war and transporting goods aided by socialist countries through Lưu Xá Station to the south. They died in a bombing raid.
Thái Nguyên Province was where Việt Nam’s Youth Volunteer Brigade was founded in 1950. During the nation’s two wars, tens of thousands of young people from Thái Nguyên and Bắc Kạn volunteered to join the force.
The province has made important progress in recent years including faster and more sustainable economic growth as well as better welfare policies.
Ngân said she believed the province would uphold its revolutionary traditions and continue to strive towards better achievements.
At the ceremony, a renovated monument to Team 915 was unveiled in gratitude to the major contributions made by war veterans, martyrs and youth volunteers.
The Youth Volunteer Brigade was one of several volunteer organisations founded during the two Indochina wars. Việt Nam’s first Youth Volunteer Brigade was founded following President Hồ Chí Minh’s order in July 1950 in Yên Lãng Commune, Đại Từ District in Thái Nguyên Province.
Its first 225 members were tasked with logistics which aided the Vietnamese army’s efforts during the resistance war against the French.
By the end of 1954, when the conflict with the French ended, there were thousands of youth volunteers.
By 1975, after the end of the American War, the force had grown to tens of thousands. Many of them were unmarried young girls.
The young members were known for their bravery during the wars and their contributions to Việt Nam’s triumph over foreign evaders which involved protecting key roads and providing weapons, food, medicine, medical services to the Vietnamese army.
Thousands of them sacrificed their lives for the country’s independence.
One of the most well-known incidents occurred in Hà Tĩnh Province in 1968 when 10 unmarried girls were killed while filling craters and repairing the road in Đồng Lộc, which was a strategic link between the north and the south and hit by an estimated 48,600 bombs over 240 days (from March-October 1968).
The same day, the NA leader visited the High Command of Military Zone 1 in Thái Nguyên Province on the occasion of the 74th anniversary of the Việt Nam People’s Army and the 29th anniversary of the All-People Defence Festival. – VNS