|Local members of various garden clubs will dedicate a Blue Star Memorial Marker on Thursday, June 14, outside of the Rutherford County Courthouse in Murfreesboro.
The Flower Growers, Garden Lovers, Optimistic Gardeners and Stones River Garden Clubs partnered to erect the memorial in honor of all those who have served in the U.S. military.
“We are honoring all who have served, are serving or will serve in the armed forces,” said Murfreesboro resident Pam Dowd, chairwoman of the Blue Star Memorial for the Tennessee Federation of Garden Clubs Inc. “Each club has 25 members who devote many hours to community service work, and one of these projects has long been the Blue Star Memorial Program.”
The dedication is scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. on the Square in downtown Murfreesboro.
According to a press release, the Blue Star Memorial Marker Program of the National Garden Clubs Inc. began during World War II to honor the men and women serving in the military.
The program was named in recognition of the star on American flags displayed in homes and businesses denoting a family member serving.
Since then, the organization has been instrumental in gaining approval for the designation of Blue Star Highways by petitioning state legislatures and working with the U.S. Departments of Transportation to develop the program, as well as the uniform marker that denotes a recognized roadway.
Throughout years, the Blue Star Memorial Program has grown to extend across thousands of miles across the country, and markers continue to be dedicated each year on highways, national cemeteries, veteran facilities, and civic and historic sites.
“This Blue Star Memorial is our way of showing appreciation for those who defend this country,” Dowd said, adding it is important for Americans to continue to support the U.S. military, regardless of any political issues surrounding a particular war.
Because Rutherford County does not have a Blue Star Memorial Marker, members of the local garden clubs voted to combine efforts to install and have one dedicated at a prominent Murfreesboro location, she said.
“The clubs voted unanimously to seek permission to place the Blue Star Memorial Marker on the grounds of the historic Rutherford County Courthouse,” Dowd said, adding members of the garden clubs greatly appreciate the assistance of Rutherford County Mayor Earnest Burgess, who was instrumental helping to obtain permission from the Rutherford County Commission to erect the marker.
As an additional project, Flower Growers Garden Club will landscape around the base of the marker before the dedication takes place.
“We will have an active service member from each of the branches of the U.S. military and veterans,” Dowd said.
Several members of the Murfreesboro City Council and County Commission will also be in attendance, many of who will participate in the dedication ceremony.
“The public is invited to attend this very important, timely and meaningful dedication, which is planned to let those who have served, are serving and will serve in the armed forces know that we honor them,” she said, “and that we care.”