Blumenthal proposes “Gold Star” stamp to honor those who have lost a loved one in combat

To reaffirm and revive the nation’s longstanding commitment to Gold Star Mothers and Gold Star Families, U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) wrote Postmaster General Megan Brennan today to urge the United States Postal Service to re-issue the stamp recognizing and honoring families who have lost a child or family member in service to the nation. The U.S. Post Office Department first issued a stamp honoring Gold Star Mothers in 1948. Blumenthal was inspired to contact USPS by constituent Joseph (Joe) Kaliko, of Greenwich who recently wrote the Senator with the idea to re-issue the stamp.

“Gold Star Mothers and Fathers and Families are true national heroes. They deserve our deepest gratitude and respect. Their extraordinary contribution is beyond measure – not merely for their loss, but the comfort they selflessly provide others, and their model of service and sacrifice,” Blumenthal wrote. “In Connecticut, Gold Star Mothers were instrumental in the establishment of the Connecticut Trees of Honor, a living memorial to all who made the ultimate sacrifice during operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Their strength, courage, resolve, and resilience are remarkable beyond words.”

In 1947, President Harry S. Truman signed into law legislation establishing the first Gold Star Mothers stamp. The original Gold Star Mothers stamp became available on September 21, 1948. The first sheet of stamps were presented to Mrs. Thomas F. Sullivan of Waterloo, Iowa, who lost five sons when an enemy torpedo sank the cruiser Juneau on November 13, 1942.

Because the Gold Star Mothers stamp was designated as a special series commemorative stamp, rather than a permanent stamp, it was eventually discontinued. In 1993, a “Gold Star Loss” stamp was issued as part of a series of stamps marking the 50th anniversary of World War II.

Although the Postmaster General has the authority to issue a stamp, Congress may also approve the issuance of specific stamps. Blumenthal also intends to introduce legislation designating a Gold Star Family stamp when Congress reconvenes in September.

The full text of today’s letter is available here

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