Bruce Rauner, Governor

State Links Skip to Content Skip to State Links

 Health & Safety
 Family & Home
 About Illinois

Stay Informed

Your Government

Illinois Flag Honors

Inspector General

 IGNN: State/All Press Release

The State of Illinois News page provides access to the Illinois Government News Network and all state press releases.

September 26, 2010

Governor Quinn Honors Families of Fallen Illinois Heroes at Gold Star Mothers Ceremony
Twenty-two Mothers of Fallen Servicemembers Presented with Gold Star Banners

CHICAGO – September 26, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today presented Gold Star Banners to 22 Illinois mothers whose sons and daughters died in combat while serving their country in the Global War on Terror. More than 70 members of Illinois’ Gold Star families who lost family members on active duty since Sept. 11, 2001 attended the ceremony at Chicago’s Navy Pier.

The ceremony, which was co-sponsored by the USO of Illinois, marked Gold Star Mother’s Day. The day has been commemorated on the last Sunday in September since President Franklin Roosevelt declared the first Gold Star Mother’s Day in 1936. On Aug. 16, 2009 Governor Quinn signed legislation to formally designate the fourth Sunday in September as Gold Star Mothers Day in Illinois. A list of the 2010 Illinois Gold Star recipients is attached.

“Gold Star Mother’s Day honors those whose sons or daughters gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country,” said Governor Quinn. “It is important that everyone in our state takes this opportunity to express our reverence and respect for these patriotic families and their loss.”

Presenting Gold Stars to mothers is an American tradition dating back to 1918, at the end of World War I. At that time, President Woodrow Wilson suggested that instead of wearing conventional mourning black from head to toe, families of men and women who had died in service to their country should wear a black armband with a gold star to signify their loss and their pride. Bereaved families also displayed Gold Star banners – gold stars on a white background with a wide red border – in the windows of their homes.

Verizon Wireless also co-sponsored the Illinois 2010 Gold Star ceremony for the fourth straight year.

Governor Quinn was joined at the ceremony by Dan Grant, director of the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs; Major Gen. William Enyart, Commander of the Illinois National Guard and Patti Smith of Blue Star Mothers Illinois. Illinois Poet Laureate Kevin Stein recited the poem “To Illinois’ Gold Star Mothers.”

2010 Gold Star Recipients

Susan Weikert
Julie Magana
Christine Hotchkin
Paula Smith
Anna Ware
Amanda Talbert
Janette Hawkins
Azzalee Rice
Willa "Netha" Morgan
Marilyn Smith
Patricia Boyd
Denise Newton
Elizabeth Edwards
Colleen Valentine
Bernadine Miller
Maria Santiago
Beverly Trussel
Linda Crislip
Renee Young
Esther Gresham
Christina Sweet
U.S. Army Sgt. Matthew W. Weikert
U.S. Army Sgt. Jesse R. Tilton
U.S. Army PFC. Gunnar R. Hotchkin
U.S. Air Force Sen. Airman Bradley Smith
U.S. Army Sgt. Albert Ware
U.S. Army Specialist Christopher Talbert
U.S. Army Sgt. Paul G. Smith
U.S. Army Cpl. Demetrius Rice
U.S. Army PFC. David John Badie
U.S. Army National Guard Gerrick D. Smith
U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Christopher J. Boyd
U.S. Marine Corps LCpl. Robert J. Newton
U.S. Army PFC Shawn C. Edwards
U.S. Navy Fireman Jack B. Valentine
U.S. Army Sgt. Daniel Esbaugh
U.S. Army Sgt. Anibal Santiago
U.S. Army Cpl. Francis Trussel
U.S. Army Private Timothy Crislip
U.S. Navy PO 1st Class Jennifer Valdivia
U.S. Army Specialist Daniel Gresham
U.S. Army Specialist Christopher Sweet
East Peoria
Creve Couer
West Chicago




News Categories

 Governor's Office
 Lt. Governor's Office
 Economic Development
 Flag Honors
 Health/Human Services
 Opportunity Returns

News Resources

 Search the News
 IIS Radio News
 RSS News Feeds
 e-News Subscriptions
 Communications Office
 Privacy Statement


Sign up for an e-news subscription
Copyright © 2017 State of Illinois Site Map | Illinois Privacy Info | Kids Privacy | Web Accessibility | Contact Us