WASHINGTON (AP) _ Veterans who died after the Vietnam War as a result of service in the war would be remembered on a special plaque at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington under legislation the House passed Tuesday.

The bill, passed 421-0, authorizes the placement of a plaque on the memorial grounds to honor those veterans who returned from the war but later died of service-related causes as exposure to the herbicide Agent Orange or post-traumatic stress syndrome.

Service members who suffered combat wounds and died from their wounds in succeeding years have their names placed on the Wall.

``There are many who fought in Vietnam and died because of their service there but whose sacrifice has still gone unrecognized,'' said Rep. Elton Gallegly, R-Calif., the chief sponsor.

Gallegly's office said the small plaque would carry a fitting inscription but would not bear names of veterans or enumerate causes of their service-related deaths.

The legislation, which still needs Senate approval, has the backing of major veterans' groups such as the Vietnam Veterans of America, Veterans of Foreign Wars and AMVETS.

The wall of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, dedicated in 1982, carries the names of about 58,220 people who died during Vietnam War service or afterward from wounds. More than 2.5 million people visit the wall every year, the most of any memorial in Washington.

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EDITOR'S NOTE _ The bill number is H.R. 3293.