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New addition at Veterans Memorial planned to honor Gold Star families

Jan 23 2020
Christine Mitchell | WHNT

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- The Huntsville Madison County Veterans Memorial is adding its final monument. The memorial will soon feature a monument that honors not only our fallen service members but the families they left behind, known as Gold Star families.

“It starts with a knock at the door from a man in a uniform," said Julie Kink, a Gold Star sister who spoke at Thursday's announcement. "And then in one heart-stopping moment, we became part of a group that no one willingly joins, we became Gold Star families."

For Julie's family, that knock on the door came in the summer of 1969 when she was eight years old.

"We learned that my 19-year-old brother David had lost his life flying a helicopter in the Vietnam war," she said.

There are over 6,000 Gold Star families living in Alabama.

The Alabama Gold Star Families Memorial Committee, the Huntsville-Madison County Veterans Memorial Foundation and the Hershel "Woody" Williams Medal of Honor Foundation joined together to make this monument possible.

“I think it will be a place for people to come and reflect, but also a place for people to have various ceremonies and commemorations that are also geared toward families," Julie said.

The Gold Star Families Memorial Monument is expected to be completed sometime in Fall 2020.