Oct. 30, 2016
Kalea Gunderson | WCHS
BARBOURSVILLE, WV (WCHS/WVAH) — In the last three years, efforts to build gold star families monuments have begun in 40 different places across the country. Now there's one locally, in Barboursville Park.
The memorial is designed to honor the gold star families who have lost loved ones in military service
Vernon Henry lost a loved one in the attacks on Pearl Harbor, and he says a monument like the gold star family memorial, would have meant a lot to his family.
"I wish my mother was still alive. I won't forget, Pearl Harbor day. My mother said I’ll never see him alive, and she didn't,” Henry said.
Medal of Honor recipient, Hershel "Woody" Williams, says honoring these families is long over-due.
"Our country has failed over the years to pay tribute and honor those families who sacrificed a loved one in our armed forces from the Civil War on. And these monuments are for that purpose,” Williams said.
The monument was unveiled Sunday and is part of a nationwide project, which Mayor Chris Tatum says has found a permanent home in Barboursville.
"Not only those men and woman that paid the ultimate sacrifice for freedom, but families are left behind in the wake of all that and those people need to be remembered as well,” Tatum said.
This monument was possible through donations and community volunteers. There are now 17 completed gold star family monuments throughout the United States.