A Blue Star Memorial Marker was dedicated at the Fort Mitchell National Cemetery Tuesday to honor all men and women who have served in the armed forces.
Helen Richards, chair of The Blue Star Memorial Marker for the Garden Club of Alabama, said the Blue Star dates back to 1945, recognizing men and women who served during World War II. The star was placed in homes and businesses to recognized those serving.
Over the years, the National Council of State Garden Clubs adopted the program and extended the honor to highways, covering thousands of miles across the continental United States, Alaska and Hawaii. The marker unveiled Tuesday was placed at the entrance of the cemetery located off Alabama 165.
Fort Mitchell is the final resting place for veterans of all armed forces and their families. Cemetery director James Sanders said the cemetery has eight other monuments honoring soldiers. Leroy Davis, a retired chief petty officer who served on the USS Carl Vinson and a member of American Legion Post 135, said the marker shows that civilians still care about veterans.
“Our civilian population still cares enough about us to continue to do things for us,” he said. “That generation is slowly dying out. I’m waiting to see what the next generation is going to do.”
Davis said he wonders how younger people are going to pick up where this generation will leave its work. “It makes you wonder, don’t it,” he said.
Davis of Fort Mitchell hasn’t been proud of what he has seen from young people at some public events. “I have been at ball games and they won’t stand for the National Anthem,” he said. “There is no more respect.”