The Gold Star Lapel Button, also referred to as the Gold Star button, is distributed to members of the immediate family of a fallen servicemember by the Department of Defense. The button is distributed according to strict Department of Defense guidelines for service members who have lost their lives in a conflict or in support of certain military operations. The Gold Star has also appeared on flags, as were popular during WWII, which families would hang in the window to indicate that a loved one had been killed overseas. Gold Star Families, those included in this Registry, are individuals who have received the Gold Star Lapel Button from the Department of Defense for the sacrifice of their loved one. The National Gold Star Family Registry is a program of Military Families United, a 501c3 Non-Profit organization that does not endorse or promote ANY political candidate for any political office. The use of a name such as "Gold Star Family" is commonly used to describe a family whose immediate family member was killed in action.
The National Gold Star Family Registry is the first comprehensive database of the United States’ fallen Heroes ever developed. The Registry not only affords family members the opportunity to publicly remember their loved one, but serves as a historical log of our Nation’s true Heroes. By providing educational resources and personal accounts, the Registry ensures that future generations may know who these brave Americans were—not only how they died, but, more importantly, how they lived.
The information in the Registry is compiled from a number of different public sources including the Department of Defense and the National Archives. Adhering to Department of Defense guidelines for families who receive the ‘Gold Star Pin,’ the Registry only includes the names of Heroes who have given their lives on the battlefield.
From the Vietnam Wall in Washington, DC, to the countless war memorials on courthouse lawns, the United States is peppered with stone monuments honoring those who have made the ultimate sacrifice. These treasures are powerful, but access is limited by geography, and names inscribed in stone don’t tell the Heroes’ full story. The National Gold Star Family Registry serves as a 21st Century monument, utilizing the latest in internet technology to memorialize those same men and women in a whole new way.
The National Gold Star Family Registry is a project of Military Families United, a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization whose mission is to Honor the Fallen, Support Those Who Fight, and Serve Their Families. Through various events held for Gold Star Family members, Military Families United recognized a need for families to be able to share the stories of their Heroes with the world. In the beginning, families attending these events wrote their stories in a notebook to share with other Gold Star families, this concept eventually took the form of the virtual memorial.
First launched in 2010, the Registry has been continually upgraded with the latest in technology and resources. This 21st Century memorial ensures that anyone anywhere can honor and remember the Heroes who have laid down their lives in defense of freedom. Whether they gave their life in Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, Korea, WWII, or another conflict, the Registry is a place to ensure their memory will live on.
Military Families United is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization whose mission is to Honor the Fallen, Support Those Who Fight, and Serve Their Families. We are a national coalition of Blue Star, Gold Star, Next of Kin, Veterans, and Patriotic American families who share a deep appreciation for our men and women in uniform and support them in their mission to keep America safe. Founded in 2005 to provide an avenue for military families to remind the nation of the importance of supporting our military and the mission they have been given , the organization expanded to provide charitable programs offering families direct support. Through a portfolio of unique services, events, and advocacy programs, the organization seeks to ensure that future generations of Americans will never forget the sacrifices of our courageous military.