N.W.BOYER…Christian Author

Posts tagged “Gold Star Families

Another Statue Being Removed?

Statue in Sarasota, FL…Celebrating WWII end

We were fortunate to live in a wonderful, little town named Venice, Florida for a number of years where my husband was a Christian minister. The next city, north of Venice is Sarasota…also a beautiful town on the Gulf of Mexico. Standing near the beach is a patriotic statue of the famous picture of a sailor kissing a nurse in celebration of the end to fighting in WWII.

In fact, when this photo was made, the whole population of New York was celebrating in the middle of the streets. Every time I rode by the statue in Sarasota, I thought how great that we are still reminded of the wonderful military and medical personnel that served and died in WW II.

Unfortunately, the statue was sprayed with red paint and the city is considering removing it all together. Why?

Is it pressure from various groups? Have we stopped celebrating our World War II victory? Is this like so many statues that depict history that are being damaged, removed or defaced? Removing this statue is a slap in the face to our bravest men and women.

Vandals, You couldn’t find a better place for your thoughts?

A letter written to the Sarasota mayor and commissioner:

“It commemorates the celebration of VJ Day and the end of World War II,” Rep. Vern Buchanan wrote in a letter to the mayor and city commission. “This representation of that moment more than 75 years ago reminds us of an important time in our country’s history and honors the ‘Greatest Generation’ who served and sacrificed.”

The 25-foot “Unconditional Surrender” sculpture depicts an iconic photograph taken in Times Square in Aug. 14, 1945, showing a Navy sailor named George Mendonsa kissing Greta Zimmer Friedman, a dental assistant, in the street. (Taken from the article written by Michael Riuz)

Pictures of the Sailor and the Nurse….George Mendonsa and Greta Zimmer Friedman in the younger and older years. George died at 95 and Greta died at 92. Thank you for your lives and years of service!

We hope for the sake of all those Gold Star families and brave veterans who fought for freedom, Sarasota will reconsider its removal. San Diego has the same statue…refurbished it…and made it permanent. At least we hope it is still there! Keep celebrating the brave and the free.

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UPDATE AFTER THIS BLOG WAS POSTED: UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER STATUE WILL STAY ON SARASOTA WATER FRONT:

The announcement came in an tweet from the Florida Congressman and well before Sarasota’s elected officials were poised to discuss the issue. (Most likely because the citizens of Sarasota were in an uproar!)

VIDEO

Click to view video


Gold Stars

Gold Star

What do Gold Stars represent to a military family?    We can trace this special emblem back to World War I.  If a military member of a family died,  a flag that had been flown with a blue star was replaced with a gold one.  This allowed the world to know the price that this family had paid for the freedom we enjoy today.

The observance of the Gold Star Mothers Day began in 1936 on the last Sunday of September.  It was not until World War II that the Gold Star Wives was formed. Wives could then wear a Gold Star Lapel Button.   All members of the family can be recognized today as a Gold Star Family.   This  is why the Army believes that no one has given more to our country than those who have lost a loved one to war.

In 1954, an American Gold Star Mothers Headquarters was purchased in Washington, D.C. near the Lincoln and Vietnam Memorials, containing the records of all deceased soldiers from  World War I, World War II, the Korean conflict, Vietnam War and now the Iraq War.

On June 12, 1984, The American Gold Star Mothers received their charter which reads:

  •   Keep alive and develop the spirit that promoted world services   
  •  Maintain the ties of fellowship born of that service, and to assist and further all patriotic work 
  •   Inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, State, and Nation
  •   Assist veterans of World War I, World War II, the Korean Conflict, Vietnam and other strategic areas  and their dependents in the presentation of claims to the Veterans’ Administration, and to aid in any way in their power the men and women who served and died or were wounded or incapacitated during hostilities.
  •  Perpetuate the memory of those whose lives were sacrificed in our wars
  •   Maintain true allegiance to the United States of America
  •   Inculcate lessons of patriotism and love of country in the communities in which we live
  •   Inspire respect for the Stars and Stripes in the youth of America
  •  Extend needful assistance to all Gold Star Mothers and, when possible, to their descendants
  •   To promote peace and good will for the United States and all other Nations.

More recently, 2008, the Gold Star Children, a non-profit organization, was founded to raise awareness about  children whose mothers or fathers were killed or died while serving in the United States military.  We would like to introduce you to one of these American children… Miles Eckerd and his gift to Lt. Colonel Frank Daily, who experienced a “new direction in life” from this small child…a Gold Star Kid.

The video below, shown on CBS News, will help all of us to understand the loss and grief that happens when just one soldier dies and leaves their family behind.  Blessings to them all.

Turn on sound.