Wreaths laid in honor of the Gold Star families | News, Sports, Jobs
Over the past weekend, veterans organizations, joined by community members, took the time to honor their fallen siblings for the National Gold Star family and Mother’s Day.
A Gold Star Honor and Remembrance Ceremony was held Sunday at the Marietta Gold Star Memorial Park to mark the day.
Jared Smith, Washington County’s veterans service commissioner for foreign war veterans, addressed the community.
âToday is the national day of mothers and the family of the golden star. May we properly honor our beloved Gold Star service members and the sacrifice they made to ensure that the United States of America remains free today, â he said, opened the ceremony.
âIt is said that man is not dead until he is forgotten. Today we are doing our part to make sure we never forget.
Seven wreaths were laid, one to represent each of the following service organizations: American Legion post 64; American Veterans with Disabilities Chapter 52; AMVET (American veterans) after 1788; Military Order of Purple Hearts Chapter 743; Bill O’Malley’s Detachment 1436 of the Marine Corps League; Foreign War Veterans Post 5108 and the Mid-Ohio Valley Platoon of the Marine Corps. Veterans Association.
During the ceremony, Gary Ward spoke a few words of thanks for the veterans and community members gathered at the event. The Ward / Perry family lost their son, specialist Christian Ward in 2019.
Christian Ward enlisted in the United States Army July 21, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina. He completed basic combat training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, and advanced individual training for the 15T UH-60 Blackhawk mechanic course at Fort Eustis, Virginia. His assignments include the UH-60M crew chief and ALSE technician with Charlie Company and the 2-4th General Support Aviation Battalion located at Fort Carson, Colo., With whom he once deployed to Romania. and Bulgaria while posted to Task Force Comanche in support of Atlantic Resolve.
“No one wants to be a Gold Star family” read Jason Lowe, Senior Commander of Wood County Marine Corps Services.
Lowe explained that the title – which is reserved for the families of service members who have died in the line of duty – is meant to honor the service member’s ultimate sacrifice while recognizing the loss, grief and continued healing of their families.
“Even though the nation is not currently part of a conflict as global as WWII, and only 1% of the American population serves in the military today, compared to 12% who served in WWII – there are more living gold stars. Families than you might think â, he said.
Lowe said that according to a Military Times article, since 9/11 more than 16,000 troops have died in non-combat circumstances and 7,000 have died in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan alone.
âThere are also thousands of living members of the Gold Star family who lost loved ones during WWI, WWII, Korean War, Vietnam War and other conflicts during the 20th century. and 21st centuries “, he said.
Lowe took the time to share the story behind the term “Gold Star Family”.
“The phrase “Gold Star Family“Dating back to World War I, when military families displayed service flags with a blue star for every immediate family member serving in the armed forces,” he said.
The color of the star would be changed to gold if the family lost a loved one in war, hence the term, “Gold Star Family.” Individual family members of servicemen who have lost loved ones have also started to be called out. “Women of the Gold Star” “Mothers of the Gold Star” etc.
“In 1928, Grace Darling, a Gold Star Mother, took this then informal designation a step further and founded American Gold Star Mothers with a group of 25 other grieving mothers,” he said.
The organization, which is a membership-based organization dedicated to keeping the memory of deceased servicemen alive by working to help the military community, is located in Washington, DC, and continues to operate today.
“A few years later, in 1936, President Franklin D. Roosevelt built on this growing movement to honor the mothers of deceased service members and designated the last Sunday in September as the Mother’s Day of the Gold Star. national. “ he said.
Member of the Wood County Marine Corps. Mike McLain explained that local monuments are called “Gold Star Family” monuments, because everyone in the family is affected, not just mothers.
They were ‘Gold Star Mothers’ monuments, until Hershel Woody Williams, who was instrumental in building the monuments locally, gave a speech and after the event a father approached him. and said “fathers cry too”, “ McLain said.
McLain said they agreed and decided that the monuments should honor all family members who have sacrificed one or more of their loved ones in the United States armed forces for freedom.
Madeline Scarborough can be reached at [email protected]