The Scott Helmer Show • ORIGINAL AIR DATE: Tuesday, June 20, 2017
GUEST: Candy Martin • American Gold Star Mothers
MISSION: To serve veterans and their families, we provide support to other Gold Star Mothers and we promote patriotism and flag etiquette.
Who Is a Gold Star Mother? Often the question has been asked, "Who is a Gold Star Mother?" During the early days of World War I, a Blue Star was used to represent each person, man or woman in the Military Service of the United States. As the war progressed and men were killed in combat, others wounded and died of their wounds or disease, there came about the accepted usage of the Gold Star.
This Gold Star was substituted and superimposed upon the Blue Star in such a manner as to entirely cover it. The idea of the Gold Star was that the honor and glory accorded the person for his supreme sacrifice in offering for his country, the last full measure of devotion and pride of the family in this sacrifice, rather than the sense of personal loss which would be represented by the mourning symbols.
On June 4, 1928, a group of twenty-five mothers residing in Washington, DC, met to make plans to organize a national organization to be known as American Gold Star Mothers, Inc., a non-denominational, non-profitable and non-political organization. On January 5, 1929, the organization was incorporated under the laws of the District of Columbia.
The Charter was kept open for ninety days. At the end of this time, they had a membership of sixty-five, which included mothers throughout the United States: North, South, East, and West.
There were many small groups of Gold Star Mothers functioning under local and state charters. When these groups learned of a national organization with representation in nearly every State in the Union they wished to affiliate with the larger group and many did so. This group was composed of women who had lost a son or daughter in World War I.
Beginning's: When the United States entered World War I in 1917, George Vaughn Seibold, 23, volunteered, requesting assignment in aviation. He was sent to Canada where he learned to fly British planes since the United States had neither an air force nor planes. Deployed to England, he was assigned to the British Royal Flying Corps, 148th Aero Squadron. With his squadron, he left for combat duty in France. He corresponded with his family regularly. His mother, Grace Darling Seibold, began to do community service by visiting returning servicemen in the hospitals.
The mail from George stopped. Since all aviators were under British control and authority, the United States could not help the Seibold family with any information about their son.
Grace continued to visit hospitalized veterans in the Washington area, clinging to the hope that her son might have been injured and returned to the United States without any identification. While working through her sorrow, she helped ease the pain of the many servicemen who returned so war-damaged that they were incapable of ever reaching normalcy.
But on October 11, 1918, George's wife in Chicago received a box marked "Effects of deceased Officer 1st Lt. George Vaughn Seibold". The Seibolds also received a confirmation of George's death on November 4th through a family member in Paris.