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Backers of Statue for Women Vietnam Vets Present Plan

September 11, 1987

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Supporters of a plan to add a statue of a military woman to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial presented their proposal Thursday to Interior Secretary Donald P. Hodel.

Sen. David Durenburger, R-Minn., a leading proponent of the project, said he came away from the meeting encouraged that Hodel would approve the planned addition to the memorial, which is one of the capital’s most visited attractions.

″He asked all the right questions and then some,″ Durenburger said. ″We sort of went away feeling it’s just a matter of the secretary getting together with the director of the Park Service. And if they can agree in the next couple weeks, we are very hopeful of a positive recommendation.″

A spokesman for Hodel, Allen Levitt, said the secretary made no decision on the proposal. He said Hodel was glad to receive information about the project and planned to meet with National Park Service Director William P. Mott on the proposal.

Durenburger said the backing of Hodel is needed before the proposal goes before two federal boards that must approve any federal monuments.

Also in the meeting in Hodel’s office were Donna Marie Boulay, a former Army nurse from Minneapolis who heads the Vietnam Women’s Memorial Project, and architects for the proposed addition.

The group wants to add the statue to honor the 10,000 women who served in the war. It would be in addition to the figures of three male soldiers, situated among trees near the black V-shaped wall that is the main focus of the monument on the Mall near the Lincoln Memorial.

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