The grounds of Arlington National Cemetery feature 142 Memorial Trees, which serve as living memorials that commemorate military units and battles, veterans, families and others who serve. Many were dedicated by U.S. presidents, visiting dignitaries or representatives from service organizations. Thirty-six are Medal of Honor trees, each a descendent of a historic tree.
Pictured: The Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association Memorial Tree, dedicated in 2015. This tree, a red maple (Acer rubrum) native to the United States, honors the helicopter pilots and crew members who died while serving in Southeast Asia from 1961 to 1975. The Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association (VHPA) estimates that over 100,000 helicopter pilots and crew members served during the Vietnam War — often called America's "Helicopter War," due to the significance of helicopters in facilitating rapid troop transport, close air support, resupply, medical evacuation, reconnaissance, and search and rescue. Approximately 5,000 helicopter pilots and crew members were killed in action, and more than 300 of these pilots and crew members are buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
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