Debbie McCray – American Gold Star Mother

On November 11th, the nation takes time to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good. At a recent meeting, the Rotary Club of Tryon honored our veterans by hearing about the sacrifice of Gold Star Mother, Debbie McCray.

Debbie spoke to the Rotary Club dressed in white, the traditional color for Gold Star Mothers. During her presentation, Debbie described how she became a Gold Star Mother when her son, SPC. Geoffrey Whitsitt, was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2010.

Rotarian Louis McCray and his wife Debbie McCray

On June 4, 1928, twenty-five mothers met in Washington, DC to establish the national organization, American Gold Star Mothers. The success of the organization continues because of the bond of mutual love, sympathy, and support of the many loyal, capable, and patriotic mothers who while sharing their grief and their pride, have channeled their time, efforts and gifts to lessening the pain of others.

Homes fly a service flag with a Blue Star used to represent each person, man or woman in the Military Service of the United States.

When a member of the family is killed in service, the Gold Star is substituted and superimposed upon the blue Star in such a manner as to entirely cover it.

The Gold Star represents the honor and glory accorded the person for his/her supreme sacrifice in offering for his country the last full measure of devotion.

The Gold Star flag also exhibits the pride of the family in this sacrifice, rather than the sense of personal loss which would be represented by the mourning symbols.

The Rotary Club of Tryon thanks all veterans and their families for the service they have given to our country. Military service epitomizes the Rotary Moto of “Service Above Self”.