Honoring Our Gold Star Mothers

Honoring Our Gold Star Mothers

By Erin Bettis

Gold Mother's Day
Photo Courtesy of Patrick Hughes

For nearly a century, the Gold Star tradition has reminded Americans of the brave men and women who have sacrificed their lives for their country. The tradition dates back to World War I when military families would hang a blue star in the windows of their homes to signify an active duty service member. That blue star was replaced with a gold star when a service member was killed in the line of duty. From this simple act of unity, the Gold Star Mothers, a network of mothers who have lost a son or daughter in combat, was formed.

Today, Gold Star Mother’s Day is celebrated on the last Sunday of September each year. These women inspire others through their poise, gallantry and resilience to honor their son or daughter’s legacy.

The title of Gold Star Mother is a badge no woman wants. However, these women have stepped forward past the restraint of loss to band together for support and guidance. This group compiles matriarchs from generations of women who have survived their children during our nation’s historic conflicts. Their unifying loss bonds them when the rest of the world is numb to the aftermath of their children’s ultimate sacrifice.

Our Gold Star Mothers extend a hand to one another as an act of unifying and healing. If you’re looking to receive that hand, or if you’re looking for ways to help our Gold Star Mothers and Families, here are some resources that may help.

Since the late 1920s, this organization of empathetic women arranges yearly memorial events around the country including Gold Star Mother’s Day at Arlington National Cemetery.

Beginning in 2010, the Gold Star Family Registry is an online resource which honors those who have laid down their lives for freedom during all of America’s past conflicts.

Standing to honor and bring awareness to Prisoners of War/Missing in Action (POW/MIA), Rolling Thunder is a non-profit organization that donates to charities helping Veterans and families of POW/MIA.

Founded in 1994, T.A.P.S. provides emotional support to anyone who has lost a friend or family member serving in the United States Armed Forces. This group helps not only the families of lost loved ones, but they offer assistance to all who suffer.

For additional resources, please visit your base’s survivor outreach program.


Erin Bettis Logo

Erin BettisI am Patricia’s Daughter. When I rest my hat as military wife and mother to daughters Whitney and Kennedy, I spend my down-time reading, writing, and laughing hysterically at my goofy husband.

Read more of Erin’s fabulous blogs here.


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3 Replies to “Honoring Our Gold Star Mothers”

  1. Gold Star Mother’s,
    Please keep in mind,America was free before we invaded Viet Nam,America was free before, war criminal Bush invaded Iraq,really we were free,Iraq posed no threat to America,neither did Vietnam.So if you’re family member died in either conflict,you should hold the government responsible not the Muslim or Vietnamese.America is war mongers.Ask yourself what Iraq did?did they shoot missles? Bomb America,the 911 perps were Saudi Arabian.Well it’s a volunteer army these days they were trying to draft most of the Vietnam.I’m sorry for you’re loss but nobody invaded America,we were already free.

    1. Captain Mike also keep in mind America was free before WW2. And always remember why you can write garbage like you just did.

  2. Marianne Sibal says:

    Thank you, Mrs. Bettie, for your article. I knew nothing beyond the tradition of hanging the star(s) in the window of homes where warriors were serving or had been lost during wars of the last few centuries; and how Rolling Thunder rides to raise our country’s awareness of others’ sacrifices.
    Thank you, everyone, for acknowledging the tragic loss of loved ones’ lives to those who miss them; in particular, Mothers. We always miss most the one farthest away, care most for the one who is sick, and pray hardest for the one who is lost or in most danger. Mothers who love every one of our children know our ability to hold, heal, and hallow them is only for a limited time. Death is the final assault in this world ending our hopes to help us all become fully human.
    May mothers who have given birth to and raised wonderful men and women who have died in the service of our nation, know how grateful my family and I are for the sacrifices they made on behalf of we who are privileged to remain in this country they served. Our thanks to their mothers is only a beginning and our prayers will be for peace so that their sacrifice will never have been in vain.

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