Honoring By Name:Blue Star Mothers To Host Annual Gold Star | News, Sports, Jobs
The Blue Star Mothers, New York Chapter 4, will again host its annual Gold Star Memorial Remembrance at 10 a.m. Saturday at Veterans Memorial Park on West Third and Logan streets in Jamestown.
As part of the remembrance during Memorial Day, the Blue Star Mothers will recognize the memory of all Chautauqua County residents who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of the United States as they honor the families left behind. This year, 21 fallen men and women will be honored by name.
The Gold Star Memorial was established in May 2013.
Blue Star Mothers have established a memorial display including a rock with a plaque honoring the fallen, surrounded by annually-flowering cherry trees in tribute to local fallen members.
The 10 a.m. ceremony will include local speakers including Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist, state Sen. George Borrello, state Assemblyman Andrew Goodell and Chautauqua County Executive PJ Wendel.
A Color Guard, 21-gun salute, and playing of Taps will be presented by local veterans organizations. The participation of the local Patriot Guard and a bagpipe benediction will also be included in the program. Along with memorial wreathes, the ceremony will include the reading of each local hero’s name followed by a moment of silence.
Keynote speaker for the memorial dedication will be Vince Horrigan, who joined the U.S. Air Force in 1971 where he served as a career officer for 27 years and retired in the grade of colonel in May 1998. As a fighter pilot, Horrigan logged over 3,500 hours in front-line fighter aircraft. His assignments included service as a USAF fighter weapons school instructor, NATO tactical systems and readiness evaluator, security assistance program manager for the Pacific Rim Countries, and Deputy Commander for combat Air Forces for the 50th Fighter Wing in the United Kingdom and 3rd Air Force in Europe.
As a senior officer he held Command, Pentagon and NATO international assignments. Horrigan later served a term as Chautauqua County executive.
Seating for the ceremony will be limited, so those in attendance are invited to bring a chair.
Since its inception during World War II, the national Blue Star Mothers organization has existed to provide support for active duty service personnel, to promote patriotism and to assist veterans organizations. Membership in Blue Star Mothers is comprised of those who now have or have had children honorably serving in the U.S. military. Chautauqua County’s local chapter — NY Chapter 4 — has been actively pursuing opportunities to provide tangible and emotional support to military personnel and their families since 2007.
Gold Star designation recognizes a family who has lost a son or daughter in the service of the country.