YOU Make a Difference

Light a luminary on Gold Star Family Day.

Please pledge your support for this special day and encourage your community to light luminaries.

Our goal is to have as many communities as possible in each state to support the families of our Fallen Heroes. There is power in numbers and together we can show Gold Star Families that we are a grateful Nation.

YOU can make a difference. Since 2007, thousands of individuals, groups, and organizations across the country have come together to hold Gold Star Luminary Initiative events in honor of Gold Star Family Day. Whether you light one luminary, 10 luminaries, or 100 luminaries, every bit of support shows Gold Star families that their sacrifices are appreciated by a grateful nation.

Below are photos of, and comments about, past luminary events held across the country:

  • "We made 23 luminaries, 21 of which we put a name on to represent that particular Marine. The other two were left blank in representation of all of the others who gave their life for our country. We all live in St. Joseph, Mo. Next year I hope to get my entire neighborhood involved."
    —Jenna from St. Joseph, Missouri

  • "My daughter and I made seven luminaries with no names representing all of the Marines that have given their lives protecting our country, and we placed them in our yard. I think all it matters is that God knows our hearts and minds."
    —Adriana from Santa Clarita, California

  • "The event on our cul-de-sac went VERY well. It was a beautiful, crisp fall evening, and everyone came outside at dusk to light their luminaries. We lined the cul-de-sac with the luminaries instead of putting them on the driveways, and it looked really nice.

    "We all gathered and talked about what a huge sacrifice all of these families had made. Everyone was incredulous that this day originated in 1936 under President Roosevelt, and yet they never knew about it until we started this Luminary Initiative. One little neighbor boy who is a Boy Scout and in fifth grade said that he wanted to do a service project next year and get our entire village to have luminaries on Gold Star Mothers Day; I thought that was really sweet."

    "We all gathered and talked about what a huge sacrifice all of these families had made. Everyone was incredulous that this day originated in 1936 under President Roosevelt, and yet they never knew about it until we started this Luminary Initiative. One little neighbor boy who is a Boy Scout and in fifth grade said that he wanted to do a service project next year and get our entire village to have luminaries on Gold Star Mothers Day; I thought that was really sweet."
    —Barb Patterson (long-time Director of Outreach for Marine Parents) from Richland, Michigan