You may or may not be familiar with the Blue Star Mothers, an organization of mothers of service members. I recently read the history of the Blue Star Mothers, and learned that the group was organized in Flint, Michigan. I am a Michigander, and finding the group’s Michigan connection made me proud. I saw the listing for chapter M1, Flint, Michigan, thereby learning it is still active, and saw a listing of the officers and meeting time and location.
I wanted to learn more about the Blue Star Mothers after I found my grandmother’s Service Flag folded into her funeral register book. I wrote about Winnie Kaiser Yearnd’s funeral register in this series, not too long ago. My grandmother died when I was six years old, but I do have wonderful memories of visits to her home. When I saw the flag, I had far off dreams of having seen it before, but I am not sure. I think it may have been displayed at her funeral; if I remember correctly perhaps that is why it was in the book. I do remember seeing Blue Star Mothers marching in the Memorial Day parades of my youth, perhaps the only women in uniform I saw during that era.
D1 sent for a service flag when GS1 entered the Navy; it has been displayed in our front window for three years. This fall, GS2 joined the Army. I remembered that D1 had mentioned needing a new flag with two stars, then forgot about it. Last night, I took the old flag out, pressed it, inserted a wood dowel in the casing at the top, and hung it in the front window.
The stars first represented my father and uncle, who served in the world War II era. Dad was too young for service during the war, but he was in the Marines for a short time after his high school graduation. There are quite a few photos of uncle Bill in uniform, he was older than my father, and served longer. I don’t believe washing the flag would be a good idea, it has no side seams, and is slightly frayed along the edges. However, I am very proud of our grandsons, and think my grandmother would be proud too.
Do you remember being told how lucky you were to live in the United States? I certainly do, freedom was highly valued, and those who served our country were respected and honored. Things were not as friendly when Papa served during the Vietnam era. It is important to remember that a price has been paid for our way of life, and today I am glad that more citizens take pride in their country and the service members who sacrifice for us.
Are members of your family serving? Do you have a service flag for your window? You can leave a comment here if you have memories of The Service Flag. If you would like on to display in honor of your service members, there is information on how to obtain one on the Blue Star Mother’s website. Even if you have no active member of the military in your family, you might enjoy reading about the history and activities of this great organization.