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  • 10 Sep 2021 4:02 PM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    Gold Star Wives of America (GSW) resonate a heartfelt sorrow to all the heroes who lost their lives from the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center New York City, the Pentagon, and at the Shanksville, Pennsylvania site. GSW recognized that twenty years ago today, the lives for many families were changed forever. The devastation of the series of terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, left many family members without their loved ones.

    As a result of the Global War on Terrorism, including Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, the GSW membership grew with many new surviving spouses. To adjust with these membership demographics, new chapters were created to appeal to the younger post- 9-11 surviving spouses, such as the virtual Arlington Gold Star Wives Chapter.

    Originally called “WWII Widows,” GSW was organized in 1945 in New York City. It later became federally chartered as the Gold Star Wives of America, Inc., with Eleanor Roosevelt as an original chartered member. Today there are 33 chapters located throughout the United States.

    Since 1945, GSW has been effective advocate for military surviving spouses. After 9-11 GSW became even more visible to assure military surviving spouses’ voices were heard. Congress asked GSW representatives to testify numerous times, to communicate the needs of survivors during the current conflict. Military survivor benefits are complex, which created some challenges for many of the survivors to receive their benefits as designed. The organization often contended with legislation that adversely affected families, as  survivor benefit laws had changed.   

    After 9-11, GSW successfully championed the creation of the Veteran Affairs (VA) Office of Survivors, which allowed  for direct communications with the VA. GSW also became an active participant in the VA/ Department of Defense forum. GSW collaborated with Disabled American Veterans in the win of the “Sharp Case” remarriage law, forcing DoD to comply. GSW was in the initial vanguard contributing to the correction of the “Widow’s Tax.” These were just some of many changes and improvements GSW has advocated since 9-11.

    The Gold Star Wives of America offers membership to all who meet the criteria (widows of those who died on active duty or as the result of a service-connected disability after leaving the military).For more information contact or call 888-751-6350.

    Dr. Vivianne Cisneros Wersel
    Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. Public Relations
  • 31 Aug 2021 11:29 AM | Maia Stanhope (Administrator)

    Veterans Disaster Response Line 24/7: 1-800-507-4571

    The VA is deploying Disaster Emergency Medical Personnel to help, and our VA Disaster Hotline is available at 1-800-507-4571 for anyone who needs help determining where to go for care. Please call that hotline and use all of the resources below to get the help you need." - VA Secretary Denis McDonough

    For all other concerns call MyVA411 24/7 at 1-800-698-2411 and press 0 to speak to an agent immediately.

  • 30 Aug 2021 4:30 PM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    The members of Gold Star Wives of America, Inc, (GSW) and many Americans are heartbroken over the recent events relating to the final withdrawal in Afghanistan. As military surviving spouses, we know how dangerous and volatile the current state is. We extend our sympathy to the families of our servicemen/women and our Afghan families who are affected by the senseless strike imposed by the militant group Isis-Khorasan.

    Since the strike occurred on the tail end of the 20-year conflict, and on the upcoming 20-year anniversary of 9-11, makes this act more inconceivable. This tragedy has surfaced many emotions.

    Our members of GSW, value the extreme sacrifice and dedication it took for those to serve after the tragic 9/11 events. Gold Star Wives of America value their service to their country and one another; they will never be forgotten.

    To those left behind, including our troops, American citizens, and the many Afghan families, Godspeed and get out safely.

  • 27 Aug 2021 11:32 AM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    Dear Gold Star Wives,

    The events in Afghanistan have been heartbreaking. Our members whose spouses lost their lives to this war, those still trying to get out, our allies, our members who are flashing back to memories of Saigon, Vietnam and other wars where similar endings occurred. My heart goes out to you all during this time.

    We have many partners we collaborate with and who support us. If you are struggling with frustration, anger or hurt and would like emotional support of any kind, I encourage you to lean on each other and/or reach out to any of our partners who provide emotional support services.

    We are stronger together, please feel free to reach out to me anytime. #GoldStarWives


    Tamra Sipes
    National President
    Gold Star Wives of America, Inc.

  • 30 Jun 2021 3:30 PM | Maia Stanhope (Administrator)

    Due to Gold Star Wives of America, Incorporated's Inland Empire Chapter President Dee Dee Rodler's years of advocacy and the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation, the Riverside National Cemetery in California will receive a Gold Star Families Memorial Monument. A groundbreaking ceremony took place a few days ago. Please click here to learn more and read Ms. Rodler's interview with The Press-Enterprise.

  • 23 Jun 2021 4:51 PM | Maia Stanhope (Administrator)

    This Veterans' Day, the Tunnel to Towers Foundation will host a reading of all 7,059 names of service members who sacrificed their lives in the post-9/11 wars. The event will take place on the National Mall. Click here to read an article about the upcoming event. Featured in the write-up are Gold Star Spouses' statements on what this honor means to them.

  • 2 Jun 2021 11:54 AM | Maia Stanhope (Administrator)

    To read an article, please copy a link and paste it in your browser.

  • 19 May 2021 2:20 PM | Maia Stanhope (Administrator)

    Gold Star Wife and Arlington Chapter Vice President, Ursula Palmer, is the Executive Director of military and veteran programs at the Cybercrime Support Network. She was recently featured on The Spouse Angle. Please click here to read the write-up by Military Times.

  • 19 May 2021 10:13 AM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    It’s been an unusual year for Community Service. Many members were not allowed to do their usual volunteer work due to Covid-19. But I’m sure many people increased financial contributions in a year that saw such need for food and various services during the pandemic.

    Reporting Community Service for GSW, the number of reports received was down quite a bit, but the total value was not that far off from last year. For the year 2020, 135 members reported a total value of over $1,736,374. This compared to the previous year (2019), when 201 reports totaled $1,898,544, a difference of about 162 thousand dollars.

    Again this year, urged on by President Flora Kernea, Magnolia Chapter topped the charts, with 26 members reporting monetary and volunteering totals of $488,821! We had MALs in three regions – South Central, Southeast andSouthwest – plus three chapters – Miami Valley, Inland Empire and Phoenix, each far surpassing $100,000!

    Thank you, everyone who sent in Community Service reports.  One result of the Covid-19 pandemic seems that more people are expanding their generosity to help those impacted by donating to food shelves and other humanitarian efforts, and some are finding new ways to volunteer. We urge you to keep track of your contributions of cash, goods, volunteer hours and mileage (and blood donations for those who are still young enough), and plan to report them to GSW Community Service next year.

    Carol DeVore
    Director, Community Service
    320-217-5072, 320-217-1321 ©

  • 12 May 2021 11:15 AM | Maia Stanhope (Administrator)

    In honor of Military Spouse Appreciation Day (May 7th), Gold Star Wife Patty Stubenhofer sat down with Heather Graf of ABC 7. She shared her family's experience and advice on how the public can offer support. 

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Thank you to our 2021 Corporate Sponsors!

Gold Level 

Silver Level

Bronze Level

For additional information, or to become a Gold Star Wives Corporate Sponsor, please visit our sponsorship page.

Additional Sponsors:
Prince of Peace Catholic Church Knights of Columbus - Hoover, AL

Birmingham, Alabama Office
P.O. Box 361986
Birmingham, AL 35236
Phone: 1-888-751-6350

Washington DC Office
200 N.Glebe Road Rm 435
Arlington, VA 22203-3755

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. is a non-profit 501(C)4 National Military Widow/Widowers Service Organization chartered by the United States Congress. Donations are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes but may be deductible as trade or business expenses. Copyright © 2021.

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