Gold Star Mothers monument rededicated

January 30, 20230

CHICAGO (WLS) — Gold Star Mothers came together Thursday to rededicate a monument that mothers of fallen World War I soldiers had erected decades ago. Although 100 years separates them, the mothers from yesteryear and today share a deep loss: They all have a child who died serving the country.

“If you lose your parent, you’re an orphan. If you lose your spouse, you are a widow or widower. But there is no word for a mother who loses their child. My son was my only child,” said Denise Williams, mother of Andrew Meari, an Army private killed in Afghanistan. “He surpassed anything I could have hoped for as a mother, and now I get to spend the rest of my life honoring his service.”

The monument at 87th Street and Western Avenue was nearly forgotten. About five years ago, Tim Noonan said he was walking with his children in the Dan Ryan Woods and found the old, dilapidated structure. He made it his mission to restore the Gold Star Mothers monument. Since then, a new plaque was added, along with an original plaque that reads, “Chicago Council of Gold Star Mothers.”

Noonan said the restoration ensures no one, including Gold Star Mothers, is forgotten for the sacrifice they made.

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