POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. — The City of Point Pleasant welcomed a new feature to the community this past June on West Virginia Day honoring mothers who have a lost child while honorably serving their country in the military.
Gold Star Mothers Monuments are memorials in honor of mothers who have lost a son or daughter while serving in the armed forces from the Revolutionary War to present day and the West Virginia Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution chose Point Pleasant as the site of one of these very special memorials. The monument was built to face the Mason County Courthouse and is visible from every direction coming into the city.
The Mason County Commission donated the land for the memorial, Frank Beckner built the structure, and Jamie Lester sculpted a large bronze memorial plaque depicting a Gold Star Mother holding the U.S. Flag close to her chest along with a written memorial.
The Gold Star Mothers is an organization originally formed in 1928 for the mothers who had lost a child while in service of the U.S. Armed Forces in World War I, but today has grown to now recognize all mothers from all U.S. wars. West Virginia soldiers have fought in every war beginning with the Revolutionary War, including present times, creating a large number of mothers in West Virginia to be honored. The Gold Star Monument project was inspired by West Virginia State Regent Malinda Davis as her “State Regents Project” during her administration from 2016-19.
Following the dedication of the Gold Star Mothers Monument, the city of Point Pleasant was presented with an Honor and Remember Flag from representatives of the West Virginia Gold Star Mothers (WVGSM) organization to hang by the monument.
The Honor and Remember Flag was adopted as a West Virginia flag in 2011. The meaning of the design and details of the Honor and Remember Flag as follows:
The red field represents the blood spilled by brave men and women in America’s military throughout history, who gave their lives so that the nation would remain free. The white border beneath and surrounding the gold star recognizes the purity of sacrifice as there is no greater price an American can pay than to give his or her life in service to the country. The blue star represents active service in military conflict. Though this symbol originated with World War I, on this flag it signifies service in all wars from the American Revolution to present day. The gold star signifies the ultimate sacrifice of a warrior in active service who will not return home. Gold reflects the value of the life that was given. The folded flag signifies the final tribute to an individual life presented to the family for their significant loss. The flame is an eternal reminder of the spirit that has departed this life yet burns on in the memory of all who knew and loved the fallen hero.
An additional flag has recently been added to the monument, representing the national society of the West Virginia DAR.
Ed Cromley, president of the Point Pleasant Chapter of the SAR/Memorial Committee member, shared these new flags as well as the flag poles were provided by the West Virginia DAR and were installed by the Gold Star Mothers Monument Committee members and the Mason County Commission.
“I have had many positive comments from community members since June,” said Cromley. “I hope it will bring attention to the grounds which contains three other memorial markers.”