At the commemoration (Photo: VNA)
 
Quang Ngai (VNA) – Hundreds of local people on March 16 offered incense at My Son relic site in Tinh Khe commune, the central province of Quang Ngai to commemorate victims of a bloody massacre by US troops 49 years ago.

The killings that occurred on March 16, 1968 in My Lai hamlet (now Son My village, Tinh Khe commune) prompted widespread outrage around the world. The massacre is also credited with advancing the end of the American War because it significantly undermined public support in the United States for the war effort.          

Some 504 unarmed civilians in Tinh Khe commune were slaughtered, mostly elderly villagers, women and children. Hundreds of houses, along with thousands of heads of cattle and poultry, and all food, were burned and destroyed that day.       

At the ceremony, Billy Kelly, a US war veteran, placed 504 roses to commemorate the victims.      

Meanwhile, another war veteran Mike Boehm, who is also Managing Director of the Madison Quakers charitable organisation, played a piece of music named “The sound of the violin in My Lai” in memory of the victims.

Boehm has visited Son My Memorial frequently, where he plays his violin to pray for the souls of the massacre victims and to send out a message of peace.     

Over the past 50 years, Son My people have joined hands to revive their land after wars and push socio-cultural-economic development.-VNA