Sunday marked Gold Star Mother’s Day, a day set aside to honor the women who have had to endure the loss of a child to war.
“Our fallen heroes answered their country’s call to duty, sacrificing all they had and all they would ever know,” President Barack Obama said in a proclamation marking the day. “Their families exemplify that same mark of selflessness and patriotism that has sustained our country and will sustain us through trials to come. We honor their sacrifice, and stand with our service members, military families, and Gold Star families as they have stood for us.”
Families of fallen soldiers receive a gold star pin from the U.S. government in recognition of their loss.
Services marking the day are held nationwide.
Erica Borggren, director of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs commiserated with the grief of the families in attendance at a ceremony honoring 10 mothers who lost sons who were fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“You had the courage to watch your son put on that uniform and go off to war, to send them to serve,” Borggren said. “We are so deeply grateful for your sacrifice, so deeply sorry
for your loss.”