Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Vince Gill to Receive Will Rogers Award GAC News & Notes:
Dinner, dancing, door prizes, raffle, and silent auction, 5:30 - 10:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 3, Elks Lodge, Canyon Country. $25, with proceeds benefiting Blue Star Mothers. Info: (661) 251-4395 or (661) 251-4934."
The Signal - Santa Clarita Valley News - Your Community: Upcoming Events:
This year’s weather was good and the festival was a great day for everyone involved. We’ve had nothing but compliments about the event.Congratulations to the parade winners: Main Stage (Best Musical float); Express Automotive (Best Vehicle), Roy Waldron Dance Team (Best School); Cain Ridge Freewill Baptist Church (Best Church float); Miracle Baptist Church (Best Float); Police Athletic League (Best Youth); Music City Blue Star Moms (Enthusiasm); Al Menah Shriners (Spirit of La Vergne) and Ultimate Family Martial Arts (Mayor’s Cup). Thanks to the judges who picked these winners.
Next year’s event is set for Sept. 18, so start planning now to be there. Also, entertainment packages can be sent to Angie Mayes from Nov. 1, 2009 - Feb. 28, 2010 only. The address is 5093 Murfreesboro Road, La Vergne, 37086. Vendor (food, craft and sales, and business) and parade applications will be accepted after January 1, 2010.
Thanks for community help at OTD 2009 : WGNS Radio:
Monday, September 28, 2009
"ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - 12 members of the U.S. Air Force were greeted with an emotional homecoming when they returned to New Mexico Sunday after serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The men and women were given a loud and happy welcome home by their families, friends and members of the Blue Star Mothers."
Air Force members return home to NM KRQE News 13 New Mexico:
The license plate reads 'Honor.' It's in memory of her son, Anthony.
Monroe was the first in North Dakota Monday to receivedthe state's new Gold Star family license plate.
The plates came out of the last legislative session but it was Monroe and others who pushed for a license plate as a way to remember North Dakotans who have died in the line of duty in the military.
Anthony Monroe was 20 when he was killed Oct. 11, 2004, while with the Army Reserves in Iraq.
The Gold Star license plates are available to the immediate families of any member of the military who was killed in the line of duty during a time of active conflict.
The plates were unveiled in the Capitol, with four sets given to families of fallen soldiers."
Plates honor fallen soldiers:
"Odessa, Texas - All weekend long, the Odessa College Sports Center has been filled with the sights and sounds of Native American culture. But today they took time to honor Permian Basin troops.
They honored Gold Star mothers of the Permian Basin today. Mothers who have lost their children fighting overseas."
CBS 7 - Your Eye on West Texas:
The event was held at the chapel at Homewood at Plum Creek. The names of each fallen soldier from the area -- as far south as Emmitsburg, Md., and as far north as Carlisle -- were read."
more...Mothers honor local families of fallen military - The York Daily Record:
Bill Milam, a member of the Charioteers Auto Club, presented a check for $300 to Gayle Sosbe, president of the local chapter of the Blue Star Mothers.
The money represented the proceeds from the car club event at the Old Fashioned Days in Darlington. The Charioteers had a car show, garage sale and bake sale at that event on Sept. 12.
"It is my humble privilege to present this check to the Blue Star Mothers to go toward their work in supporting our men and women serving in the military to protect our nation," Bill Milam said."We appreciate everything the Charioteers Auto Club has done to help the Blue Star Mothers," Gayle Sosbe said. "We also appreciate all those who participated with the Charioteers event to raise this money." "
Charioteers present check to Blue Star Mothers - The Paper of Montgomery Co. - Crawfordsville, IN:
Friday, September 25, 2009
"Over the Labor Day holiday, Helms presented the children's cards to Patti Elliott, president of the local chapter of Blue Star Mothers of America. The Blue Star Mothers organization will assist in getting the cards distributed to the troops. Additionally, Helms presented two paintings based on the cards. In each painting, she created a collage of the children's designs. One, called "A Child's Prayer," shows a little girl kneeling to say her bedtime prayers on a quilt collage, and the other, called "Thank You," is simply a collage of designs."
more...Girl Scout Gold Award Project Benefits Troops - Wake County - MyNC.com:
Published September 25
"The parents of Lance Corporal Brandon Lara were presented with scrapbooks from the Canyon Lake area Blue Star Mothers and Patrick Miller of the Gold Star Families in a brief and somber presentation Thursday evening at Frost Bank on 315 Landa St.
Lance Cpl. Brandon T. Lara died July 19 in an attack in Al Anbar province in Iraq. Twenty-year-old Lara attended Canyon High School, but opted into Memorial High School to graduate early and join the Marines.
The scrapbooks are meant to provide personal and heart-felt condolences for the families that receive them.
“It includes condolence letters from other Blue Star moms and people here in town, news articles, cards from people, it’s just a keepsake,” said Penni Salge of the Canyon Lake Area Blue Star Mothers."
more... The Herald-Zeitung:
Thursday, September 24, 2009
BY PHYLLIS BOOTH PBOOTH@HOLDENLANDMARK.COM
The more than 1,000 flags created by Thomas Prince School students for the town's Memorial Day observances are finding a second life, bringing smiles of appreciation from veterans in many areas of the state."
Flags find rightful place in veterans' hands www.thelandmark.com Landmark:
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
The nonprofit — SSV President Don Gagliardi is quick to point out it's not a booster group — celebrated a lot of good work Saturday at its second annual fundraising dinner.
The sold-out affair at the San Jose Fairmont Hotel was attended by plenty of Quakes players, coaches and executives.
Gagliardi recapped the group's recent activities, both locally and internationally.
Working with Blue Star Moms, they donated soccer balls to kids in Iraq and supported projects in Ghana, El Salvador, Uganda and South Africa."
more... Pizarro: Soccer Silicon Valley scores big for community - San Jose Mercury News:
The doors open at 6 p.m. and dinner will be served at 7 p.m. for the event which will be held at the Fairfield Moose Family Center, 623 Taylor St. Tickets are a $15 donation each. Contact Lori Judy at 448-8694, or Katrine Reed at 334-4829 for tickets.
There will be raffle drawings and a silent auction. All proceeds will support troops."
Dinner to raise funds to support troops - The Reporter:
That’s because the city will be teaming up with the local chapter of the Blue Star Mother’s and the Lassen Municipal Utility District to put together a banner program that will display the name of returning local veterans, thanking them for their service."
LMUD staff will use their trucks to install banners at certain spots along Main Street. City Administrator Rob Hill said eight to 10 banners would be flown at a time, and periodically changed out. Hill’s report said the previous banners would then be dedicated to the veteran’s family by the city council.“The exact design of the banners is being worked out.” Hill said. “There are some regulations concerning (the Blue Star Mother’s) official flags, and we have to work through that and come up with a design that everybody is in agreement with.”
Lassen County Times On-Line:
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Brandon will be home on leave before his deployment. They are having a send-off event for him at home on Saturday, 03 Oct. 09. Brandon would be so honored if the PGR could attend his send-off.
Brandon’s mother is a PGR member and a member of Blue Star Mothers. We hope to be able to have the circle of their cul-de-sac lined with US flags as well as the PGR lining our front yard. The send-off is to be in the form of an 'open house' from 2-4 pm."
Send Off - PFC. Brandon Walker, Sun Prairie WI, 03 OCT 09 > Patriot Guard Forums - Americans Doing the Right Thing > Patriot Guard Riders:
The Blue Star Mothers would like to thank J&B Foods, Coborn’s, Snyder Drug of Park Rapids and Walmart for allowing us to set up in your lobbies and everyone who purchased the beautiful Blue Daisies on August 15 in support of our troops."
Letters: Blue Daisy Sale Supports troops Park Rapids Enterprise Park Rapids, Minnesota:
Thursday, September 17, 2009
The body of James Layton received a police escort from Modesto Airport to a funeral home in Escalon. Layton, 22, who was killed Sept. 8 as he tended to a wounded Marine during a firefight.
Law enforcement officers and firefighters escorted Layton's body to Deegan Funeral Chapel in Escalon. The Blue Star Mothers and the Patriot Guard Riders, a motorcycle group, rode in the procession."
Debbie Katsounakis, Blue Star's Central Valley Chapter president, said Layton was a hero. "He died protecting us. And he didn't die in vain."
Officers salute Navy medic killed in Afghanistan - Local - The Modesto Bee:
This weekend he and some special mothers delivered the donation to soldiers recovering in a hospital in Washington DC. Samek said the experience changed his life.
'That was a life long dream coming true,' said Samek.
Samek's heart has always gone out to the servicemen at war. For years he has volunteered with an organization called 'Gathering of Eagles' to help make recovery easier for wounded soldiers and veterans."
He says the greatest accomplishment is his newest project: Laptops for Troops.
"I am a 69-year-old veteran," said Samek. "This is a combination lifetime of caring and dedication to guys who didn't come home and we want to pay forward so boys will stand up when we are gone and do the same for soldiers to follow."
The program started with an email to organizations across the nation. Four weeks later, 20 laptops and web cams were donated to wounded veterans so they can keep in touch with their families regardless the distance.
"[When] the wounded soldiers go to Walter Reed they are cut off with communication," said Samek. "We want them to be able to say goodnight to their children, their wives, and have constant communication. It helps with recovery. There is nothing more important than being able to touch home."
Samek's next mission is to present laptops to the troops at Fort Bragg and Camp Lejeune with other gold and blue star mothers.
Pay it forward: Helping wounded warriors - WECT TV6 - WECT.com - Wilmington, NC news and weather -:
Best in parade: First place, American Civil War Association; second place, Nevada Union High School choir; third place, Gold Country Celtic Society; honorable mention, Ophir Prison Marching Band.
Best historical unit: First place, Daughters of the American Revolution; second place, Sons of the American Revolution; third place, Signers of the Constitution; honorable mention, Little Uncle Sam and Betsy Ross."
Best float: First place, Freemasons Nevada Lodge No. 13 F&AM; second place, E. Clampus Vitus; third place, Fur Traders.
Best marching unit: First place, Famous Marching Presidents of Nevada City; second place, Blue Star Mothers of America; third place, California Consolidated Drum Band.
Bests musical group: First place, NUHS marching band; second place, Bear River High School marching band; third place, Union Hill School marching band.
Mayor's choice: First place, Lyman Gilmore School marching band; second place, Nevada City School District; third place, Caledonian (Scottish) Club of Sacramento.
Constitution Day parade winners announced TheUnion.com:
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
Earlier this summer, veteran Randy Williams attended the American National Bank Downtown Farmers Market and saw a booth advertising Operation Melody.
The program was created about three months ago to pair veterans with musical instruments. Williams filled out an application to receive a free instrument donated by a member of the public.
“When I heard about it, I couldn’t believe it,” said Williams, who served in the U.S. Navy from 1987 until 2007. “I’ve been learning to play the fiddle, but I want to learn to play the guitar.”
Williams will soon get that chance.
Sept. 1, Williams picked up his tuned guitar from Wendy Hoffman, president of the Grand Valley Blue Star Mothers. The Blue Star Mothers is overseeing the program.
Although the local chapter of Blue Star Mothers is accepting donated instruments from the public and applications for instruments from area veterans, Hoffman did not take credit for creating Operation Melody.
That idea, Hoffman said, came from Doris Harper of Fruita, a 74-year-old musical fanatic who called in June to donate her used guitar, banjo, mandolin and accordion to veterans."
More... Operation Melody donates musical instruments to vets:
Monday, September 14, 2009
She told the story of her son, U.S. Army Spc. Joey Strong, and how she learned that he gave his life in Iraq fighting for his country.
“My life forever changed that day,” she said of the day after Christmas of 2006, when two military officers knocked on her door with her son’s papers."
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Our goal this Christmas is to send 300 care packages to soldiers serving in Afghanistan and Iraq. To do that, we need to raise $3,585 to ship them, plus collect the items to go in the care packages. We are hosting a fundraising scrapbook event with the help of www.scrapbookroyalty.com on Saturday, and we will be at Oktoberfest in downtown Hickory.
We will have yellow ribbons for a $10 donation. You will be able to write a word of support and encouragement to a soldier thousands of miles from home to go into the care packages. If you are a Mother of a soldier, we would love for you to join our group. If you have a business, we are a 501(C) (3) non-profit organization.
Contact me at 828-381-3606 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am begging for help, and I am not too proud to do it. Our troops need to know that they are not forgotten, that we support them even if we don't support the war, and that as a country we are honored that they are putting their lives on the line for us."
Care packages for troops:
“If you believe what I tell you, I’ll agree not to recruit you in the Army,” the recruiter said with a grin.
Armed with the audience’s agreement, Pierrot’s tales included a blue hand, thrown 4-by-4s and birthday celebrations involving duct tape.
During Operation Tribute to Freedom, organized by the Northwest Florida Blue Star Mothers, Pierrot and fellow soldier Staff Sgt. Hilda Wade explained why they bleed Army green."
Community and military connected when soldiers share their stories soldiers, community, stories - News - Northwest Florida Daily News:
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Bags of candy, playing cards, band aids -- just some of the dozens of items that were being packed up and shipped off to service members overseas, thanks to dozens of volunteers who took time out of their day to make more than 300 care packages.
The service project on the Rose Kennedy Greenway was the brainchild of those who run the Mass. Military Heroes Fund, along with the late Senator Ted Kennedy, who initiated the effort to make 9/11 a national day of service and remembrance."
On 9/11, volunteers help support those who keep us safe NECN:
Thursday, September 10, 2009
The event, which was a huge success last year according to Gayle Sosbe, president of the local Blue Star Mothers, will likely be bigger and better than last year.
"We learned some things last year as it was our first time," Sosbe said. "That, plus the fact more people know about it this year we hope will translate to a bigger crowd and more participation."The day will begin with a solemn ceremony to honor and remember those who died on 9-11. That ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. and will kick off the day's events. Following the ceremony there will be a "patriotic march" around the park."We will be hard to miss," Sosbe said. "We will be waving our flags and showing everyone we are proud." "
more...Freedom fest set for Saturday - The Paper of Montgomery Co. - Crawfordsville, IN:
The Blue Star Mothers will hold their annual Freedom Walk at 6 p.m. that day at The Crossings Park in Colonie. The walk begins at 6 p.m. at the new veterans memorial and concludes with a brief program.
"It's in memory of those who died. It honors our firefighters, police, emergency workers and our military," said Kay Moody of Glenmont, president of the Capital Region chapter of Blue Star Mothers of America.
The walk will circle the park and its pond and then return to the memorial for speeches from Albany County Executive Michael Breslin and Colonie Town Supervisor Paula Mahan. Poet Daniel Raye will read a poem on freedom. A disc jockey will be there, and Al Roney of radio station WGY will be master of ceremonies.
"There is no charge," Moody said. "We feel very strongly about that because we feel no one should profit from a September 11 event."
more... Blue Star Mothers plan walk -- Page 1 -- Times Union - Albany NY:2717::
The goods were given to the Blue Star Mothers in Oxford, a group his wife Vicki joined, to send packages to the troops.
“We were trying to figure out ways to help troops because we have two children in the military, and we’ve always been supportive of the military,” said Sparks, who helped coordinate the drive at the township fire headquarters that concluded near the end of August." more... Troops will get gifts from home:
Monday, September 7, 2009
Though the wind kept trying to blow out our candles, it didn’t dampen the spirits of the Blue and Gold Star Mothers and their friends who met to remember those who have given their lives or are missing in action and bless the ones who are currently serving in our country’s battle against terrorism."
Florence Kentucky Online: Picture of the Day: Candlelight Vigil:
Energizer honors Masaryktown mom's tireless work on behalf of U.S. troops with Keep Going Hall of Fame
Now, it's time for her service to be honored — in a big way.
Mills has brought national fame to herself and this tiny crossroads community in Hernando County as the 2009 winner of the national Energizer Keep Going Hall of Fame award. The award celebrates people whose attributes and actions best exemplify qualities of the Energizer Bunny: perseverance, determination and never-quit attitude."
As for collecting the most votes in the online balloting, Mills credited
"my troops, kids in Iraq and Afghanistan, a congressional person, Blue and Gold
Star moms. Everybody who supports the troops alongside me supports me."
(Gold Star mothers are those who have lost an offspring in the military field; Blue
Star Mothers who have an offspring currently serving.)
On the trip to the induction ceremony, which Energizer is paying for her and her husband, Mills
doesn't aim to just bask in the limelight.
"I'm hoping to get some support from other organizations around St. Louis, hoping we'll get some other support
for what we're doing," she said.
As for the $5,000 prize Energizer will award to her favorite charity, Mills echoed the sentiment she expressed when she
learned earlier this year that she had been nominated: "Well, you know what my charity is."
Top 10 Veterans News from Around the Country 9-04-09 : Veterans Today - News for U.S. Military Veterans Jobs, VA Benefits, Home Loans, Hospitals & Administration
Sunday, September 6, 2009
My son is going to be FINALLY coming home. He had a 14 month deployment to Iraq ending in late May. He is stationed in Germany so is just getting to come home. He is done with 4 years active duty as a combat medic. He has deployed 2 times – 1st time to Ramadi in “06 and this deployment was Sadr City . He has signed on with the Army Reserves as a physical therapy asst. and will be stationed here in AZ.
The PGR welcomed him home after his first tour and I am hoping you will consider welcoming him home this time too."
Welcome Home - Cpl. Derek Tope,U.S. Army, Mesa, AZ, 07 SEP 09 > Patriot Guard Forums - Americans Doing the Right Thing ; Patriot Guard Riders:
Blue Star Moms is a group that puts together “care” packages for our service men and women in Iraq and other locations. They are hosting a fundraiser on the vacant lot on the corner of 344 and Old 66. For more info contact Fay Cordova: 281-5702"
Edgewood Chamber Friday Blast 9/4/09 « Gadaboutblogalot's Blog:
Thursday, September 3, 2009
My Heritage Makers Blog: Support our Troops:
Driving around 'Front Street' and 'Back Street' as a child, Rockford resident Dan Baker remembers 'all of the flags.'
American flags and special service flags were flown from the porches and hung in the windows of homes around town - homes waiting for loved ones to return from WWII.
'They were about the size of a single sheet of paper,' he said of the service flags, which were hung to indicate if a family member was fighting in Europe.
The flags were red with a blue star, or multiple blue stars if more than one person was away at war. And, if someone died, Baker said, the blue star was removed and replaced with a gold one."
Historical Series - A community bonds together during WWII:
Fallen Warrior Memorial Show raised over $6,000 for Local Scholarships - Folsom Telegraph:
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
A story by Leslie DeMarco, NY5
I had an experience recently that I want to share with you. On Friday, July24, 2009 I attended the “Wounded Warrior Project” soldier ride that was sponsored by the town of Babylon, on L.I. where I live. For those of you who may not be aware of what the “Wounded Warrior Project” is, the soldier ride is a rehabilitative bicycling program for severely injured service men and women to reinvigorate their bodies and showing them how much life still has to offer. The event raises awareness and funds for the needs of combat wounded veterans. All are welcome to ride. This was the second time the event was held by the town and the first time I knew of it. I was not sure if I could attend so I did not think to contact my local officials and inform them that I would attend and represent the Blue Star Mothers of America. I had a banner made up by Service Flags.com which they shipped very quickly!
The morning of the event the sun was shinning and I just knew I had to go cheer these brave soldiers on. The event was crowd (over 900 cyclists participated I later found out). I was alittle nervous as I made my way through the crowd and up to the front. I was wearing the T shirt that the Blue Star Mothers Lake Cumberland Chapter was selling awhile ago, it really is quite nice, along with my BSM pin and my “Army parent” pin. I am not one for public display but unknown to me I would have help with my mission that day. I was standing there holding my banner when it caught the eye of a veteran, a Sargent, who seemed to have some connection organizing the event. He introduced himself and kept looking at my banner and finally said “I have to get you up front where the guys can see you” He had me in front of the cameras and photographers, he made sure the reporters had the name of the organization, but more importantly he had my banner that read “Blue Star Mothers of America” “ You are not forgotten” in front of the wounded soldiers riding in the event, all the veterans and yes, the politicians too. They announced that there was a “Gold Star Mother” present that day, a woman named Esposito, but she was not pointed out. I would have loved to meet her, say hello, and maybe just give her a hug.
As the sargent had me cross in front of the cyclists, all were quiet as the politician was speaking and some of the men called out “Thanks Blue Star Mom”, and “thanks Mom”, that alone made it all worth it! With tears in my eyes I beamed with pride for they are some mothers sons and they stood up for America. I was there to show support for them, mission accomplished! The crowd was so thick that I never did get to thank that Sargent in person but he did give me his card when he first saw me and told me that when my son came home he could contact him if he needed any help or wanted to join the VFW.
I wrote a thank you note to the politician who’s office sponsored the event, but I also wrote a special letter of thanks to the sargent who guided me on my mission, I told him I could not have done it without his help, he is still a leader!
The memorial began in 2005 as a small family gathering in Londonderry to honor Lance Cpl. Aaron Reed, and has grown to include a day of music, food and community awareness in downtown Chillicothe.
Reed, a Marine, was killed in August 2005 while serving in Iraq. That year, friends and family created a benefit to raise money for a scholarship fund at Southeastern High School. In its first year, they raised $3,428. In 2008, they raised $8,115 to give away four scholarships and make donations to the Blue Star Mothers, Habitat for Humanity and the Lima Company Memorial."
This year, funds received will go only to the scholarship fund and the Blue Star Mothers, a local group that works to send care packages to soldiers serving overseas. From 2006 through 2008, Reed's friends and family raised money to help with construction of a Habitat for Humanity house, because Reed had hoped to build a Habitat home when he returned from Iraq.
Reed Memorial event continues to grow, bring in donations chillicothegazette.com Chillicothe Gazette:
LETTERS: Blue Star Mothers say thank you to all - The Paper of Montgomery Co. - Crawfordsville, IN:
We recently had our second shipment of Care Packages go out. This time, we were able to send 55 packages to the deployed. The first time is was 22 to deployed Troops and 2 large boxes to the hospital overseas for our wounded. It may not seem like much in comparison to other groups who have been around longer but we are slowly spreading the word that there are needs that we, here at home, take for granted, that are not available to our Troops who are away from home.
Many are aware of our Troops being “down the road” but are unaware that many are still in the “sandbox” and that amazes me. I even had one woman ask me why we would send care packages to the sandbox when none of our Troops were there? Hello….Does no one watch the news or read the newspapers any more? I explained our mission and our goal so that she finally understood and she has now volunteered her services and that of several friends to help with our next packaging. YEA!!
So let me share what happened with our last packaging. One of our Moms has a son serving down the road and he had emailed her with an emergency listing of his Unit’s needs. Just 9 young men, not a tall order for us at all. Basically they were sharing deoderant, as many had run out, had several who never receive anything from home and their room was smelling a bit gamey (I won’t write what he said it actually smelled like-it was very much a guy comment though). smile….
Care Packages – From Blue Star Mamaw : Parents Zone: