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Military families honored on Gold Star Mother’s and Family’s Day

Sep 28 2020
Leanne Fuller | WPSD Local 6

Sunday is Gold Star Mother's and Family's Day — a time to honor the loved ones of those who died serving our nation's military.

President Donald Trump issued a proclamation making Sept. 27 Gold Star Mother's and Family's Day for 2020. The proclamation calls on government officials to display the U.S. flag over all government buildings, and encourages everyday Americans to display the flag and take time to publicly express gratitude and respect for Gold Star families.

The proclamation reads, in part:

"Americans of every generation owe a debt of gratitude to the men and women who gave their lives in service to this Nation and to their families who remain forever changed. On this solemn day of remembrance, we hold these families in our hearts, remember them in our prayers, support them in our words and deeds, and join them in honoring their hero’s ultimate sacrifice. May God provide them continued strength, comfort, and care, and may God bless the United States of America."

In Kentucky, Gov. Andy Beshear joined the Gold Star Families Memorial Monument Committee in dedicating a new monument on the Capitol grounds in Frankfort to honor God Star families in Kentucky. According to the Woody Williams Foundation, the monument is the 67th Gold Star Families Memorial Monument to be established in the United States and the third to be dedicated on a state capitol grounds. The Woody Williams Foundation is a nonprofit organization to establish Gold Star family monuments across the country. The organization is named after Medal of Honor recipient Hershel “Woody” Williams.

Quoting the Bible verse Romans 13:8, Beshear said "'Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law,' so let us fulfill our obligations as we honor these families and the memories of their lost loved ones. Let us draw inspiration and strength from the lives that were lived with common purpose, sacrifice, love for this country and love for this commonwealth."

"Words of praise, and even this amazing monument we're about to see, can never repay the sacrifice so many of you have made, but it does show our desire to provide that deserved attention — that we look at these families and we know, or we try to understand the depths of what they have given, and that we honor these lives lost so that your other relatives can come here, many generations from now and with pride look upon what those that came before them did for this country," Beshear said. "Let us as a commonwealth work every day to try to be worthy of these Gold Star families, let's commit ourselves to the spirit of generosity, fellowship, sacrifice and service that they've shown."

In Illinois, Gov. J.B. Pritzker attended a ceremony honoring Gold Star families and the Illinois National Guard at the Middle East Conflicts Memorial Wall in Marseilles.

"As governor there are few tasks more solemn than when I've attended the funerals or the official return of the remains of soldiers who gave their full measure of devotion to this nation's defense — the young men and women of Illinois who bravely deployed to serve in our armed forces to protect our nation and our families who knew there was no guarantee of safe return. But I'm well aware that my pride in them and my sorrow bears no comparison to what the families of these heroes feel," Pritzker said. "So, it's with great pride and great humility that I come before you today — before all of you, our Illinois Gold Star families, and particularly our Illinois Gold Star mothers."

The Illinois governor continued, "And while I can never truly know your pain, here's what I do know: you all, who have dedicated yourselves to carrying on the work and the memory of your loved ones are the very, very best of us. No one understands the true price of freedom like our Gold Star mothers and families whose humility and service to community truly are inspirational to us all."

In a statement shared via social media, Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee writes: "Today is National Gold Star Mother’s and Family Day, and we honor all of those who have lost loved ones in service to our country. We are forever indebted to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our nation. I encourage all Tennesseans to serve the families of the fallen."