Groundbreaking held for Gold Star Families Memorial Monument

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill (WAND)- Gold Star families, veterans, and state and city officials were present to witness the groundbreaking for the new Gold Star Families Memorial groundbreaking ceremony. 

The new memorial will be at Oak Ridge Cemetery, overlooking the three war memorials. A location that many find fitting. 

"Seeing that is is Oak Ridge Cemetery and the burial place of Abraham Lincoln, we thought it was fitting. Especially because we are going to be overlooking the three war memorials, we thought it would be appropriate." said Christine Hansley, Honorary Board of Directors for the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation and Illinois Project Coordinator. 

"It is incredibly important and incredibly significant that it's here at Oak Ridge Cemetery. It was Abraham Lincoln who said we must honor their lives, and care for his widow and child, and so to have this memorial here could not be more appropriate." said Denise Williams, President of the Department of Illinois American Gold Star Mothers. 

The memorial is meant to serve as a reminder to the public about not only those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, but their family members. 

"I just hope that everyone really understands the sacrifice that these Gold Star families have given to their country. It's not just the soldiers who are giving, its all the military families but these families have gone above and beyond." said Hansley. 

Organizers hope this memorial will help everyone remember the sacrifice that soldiers and their families have given for the country. 

"Most people do not know a Gold Star family, or will never meet a Gold Star family." said Williams, "But because of that some people sometimes don't realize or are feeling disconnected from the price that was paid for what they have." 

While the location of the memorial has been decided, the foundation is still working to secure donations to complete construction of the project. Hansley estimates they will need around $100,000 to complete the project, but says the cost could go down if they receive gift in-kind donations.

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