June 06, 2019


Washington, D.C. – On the 75th anniversary of D-Day, U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV), member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, introduced three bipartisan bills to honor Gold Star Families and aid Gold Star Family organizations. Gold Star Families are families that have lost a loved one in combat, terrorist attacks or overseas military operations while defending our country.

“Our Gold Star Families have made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our country’s freedoms and for that we are eternally grateful. Even though their loss can never be filled, it is our solemn duty to do everything we can to honor their loved ones and aid Gold Star Families. That’s why I introduced three bills to honor their sacrifice and their loved ones’ service. We can never repay them, but we can make sure that their loved ones are always remembered. As a member of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee, I will do everything in my power to honor and help these patriotic families,” Senator Manchin said.

“West Virginia Gold Star Mothers organization appreciates the concern that Senator Manchin has demonstrated for the Gold Star Families, as these bills advocate. We support all three of the bills that have been introduced.  The first of these bills recognizes the sacrifice of the families of the Fallen and the price of our freedom. The Forever stamp will help educate the public about Gold Star Families and the third will help give a “voice to the Gold Star wives” organization. As a Gold Star Mother I want to always honor and remember all our sons and daughters who put our country before their own lives and to recognize the sacrifices made by these families,” said Shirley White, President of Gold Star Mothers of West Virginia.

The three pieces of legislation have been endorsed by Gold Star Mothers of West Virginia, Gold Star Wives of America, Gold Star Mothers and the Military Order of the Purple Heart.  

Gold Star Families Congressional Gold Medal Act of 2019 - This bill would award a collective Congressional Gold Medal to all Gold Star Families in recognition of their dedication, contributions, and sacrifice to the United States. The Congressional Gold medal is an award bestowed by Congress and is awarded to individuals or groups of people “who have performed an achievement that has an impact on American history and culture that is likely to be recognized as a major achievement in the recipients field long after achievement.”

The Gold Star Families Forever Stamp Act– This bill would request the Postmaster General issue a Forever Stamp in honor of Gold Star Families. Each year, the United States Postal Service (USPS) issues first-class, forever stamps to commemorate or celebrate persons, anniversaries, and things of honor.

Elevating The Voices of Gold Star Wives Act– This bill would amend the Gold Star Wives of America Charter to remove the current restriction on their ability to influence legislation. In 1945, Eleanor Roosevelt helped establish Gold Star Wives of America. The Gold Star Wives of America is a Congressionally Chartered Veteran Service Organization (VSO) that testifies to Congress annually. They are currently the only Congressionally Chartered VSO that has a restriction on their ability to influence legislation.