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Honoring Gold Star Moms
They share a bond forged by war, and loss.
Gold Star Mothers have all lost a child in service to our country.
An event being planned in their honor.
Laura Hussey "Outside American Legion Post 75 in Crestview is a memorial to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. Noone knows the nature of that sacrifice better than a parent who has lost a child to war"
Corporal Mike Anaya from Crestview was killed in Iraq on Easter Sunday, 2009.
There was a knock on Cheryl Anaya's door at 6:30 in the morning.
Cheryl "I got up and I ran and looked out the window and there was two soldiers standing there and I thought and I ran back in the house yelling Carmelo, there's soldiers at the door, Carmelo, there's soldiers at the door....and we let them in"
Sergeant Josh Born from Niceville was killed in Afghanistan in February of 2012.
He called his mom Beth Croft to say I love you as he got on the bus to deploy.
It was the last time she heard his voice.
Beth "Even though you know he's always with you, or she is always with you, it's just there's always that emptiness, and it changes you forever, it changes you forever"
With the veil of hope ripped away by war, Gold star Mothers share an unspoken understanding.
Cheryl "I mean her and I could be in a room with a million people and nobody understands but me and her, and we don't have to say anything. I'm instantly part of her, and she's part of me"
Cheryl Anaya says the Legion Post has helped her family through the darkest of times.
Now they're helping to bring together other Gold Star families.
Cheryl "All the Gold Stars that I've ever met, their biggest wish isn't for accolades on themselves or honor on themselves. They don't want their babies forgotten"
Laura Hussey "On April 19, Easter weekend, American Legion Post 75 will host the first ever Corporal MIke Anaya Memorial Poker Run. The motorcycle rally will raise awareness about Gold Star Families and raise money for veterans and their families."