Today has been designated as Gold Star Wives Day.

The origins of this recognition dates back to World War I. During World War I and continuing through today, families that had a family member in the Armed Forces traditionally displayed a blue service star flag in their homes to signify a deployed family member.

The Gold Star recognition first appeared on flags in 1918, when families would pin a gold star over the blue service star hanging in their window to indicate that their loved one had been killed overseas while serving in the U.S. military.

In 1945, a non-profit organization, “Gold Star Wives of America” was formed to honor those wives and families who suffered the loss of a loved one during combat operations. There are currently over 10,000 members nationwide.

In 1947, Congress approved the use of the Gold Star Lapel Button as a way to recognize the families of service members who lost their lives while engaged in combat against an enemy of the United States.

Locally, we have 64 Gold Star family members. All of us have had our lives affected by our Nation’s battles. However, the lives of those who have lost a loved one in combat have been profoundly changed forever.

So, as many of us choose to celebrate the Easter holiday, please take a moment to honor and remember all of our Gold Star spouses and families who have committed and sacrificed so much to our great Nation.

Thank you for your continued support to all of our military families and God bless America.

First In Deed!

Lt. Gen. Michael S. Tucker

Commander, First Army

Rock Island Arsenal