It was an emotional, but happy day on Saturday when Biloxi unveiled their Gold Star Families Memorial Monument.
They gave everything for our country and the freedoms we enjoy today. There are more than 50 monuments across the United States, honoring Gold Star families.
After this weekend, a new one now stands in Biloxi.
Medal of Honor Recipient Hershel ‘Woody’ Williams said, “Over the years and all of the wars we have had and in-between, we have never recognized the families, the loved ones who gave more than any of us, they gave one of their own, and you can’t give much more than that.”
Giving your life to serve is one of the biggest sacrifices one can make, but what gets lost in that sacrifice is what is left behind.
The Hershel ‘Woody’ Williams Medal of Honor Foundation is led by Williams, who served in World War II and fought in the battle of Iwo Jima.
Williams has made it his goal to build a Gold Star Memorial in every state, honoring the relatives of those lost while serving.
When the largest credit union in the Southeast heard about the opportunity they jumped right in. Keesler Federal Credit Union CEO Andy Swoger said, “This is just a way that we can give back, these Gold Star families, they’ve made the ultimate sacrifice. This is something very, very small that we can do to give back to the community.”
Give back they did, unveiling the beautiful memorial in front of dozens of local Gold Star family members. POW/MIA Gold Star Daughter Diane Moore said, “There are just no other words that I can come up with other than it is epic.”
Being a Gold Star member isn’t a title that is wanted, but according to POW/MIA Gold Star Daughter Diane Moore, this memorial will stand as remembrance for families and the Gulf Coast as a whole. “The beautiful monument back here that is iconic for us and the Gold Stars and iconic for the Gulf Coast.”
Despite being 96-years-old, Williams makes sure to travel to each memorial dedication to speak. When asked why, he has his reasons. “I’m here not because of me, I’m here because of them. I’m here because of Gold Star families. If it weren’t for the Gold Star families who have lost a loved one, sacrificed their life for us and for America and for our freedom, I wouldn’t even be here.”