Flag to honor service people, their families
A flag honoring service men and women will be flown in front of Nevada County’s government center until the end of hostilities in Iraq and Afghanistan, the county Board of Supervisors agreed Tuesday.
Supervisor Sue Horne initiated the request to fly the Blue Star service flag in front of the Eric W. Rood Administrative Center after seeing one flying above Chico’s City Hall.
The Blue Star flags have been hung in the homes of military families since World War I.
“The Blue Star service flag is a symbol of hope and pride, hope that they will come home safe and pride in what they are doing,” said Lynnette Ellison, president of the Sierra Nevada Chapter of Blue Star Mothers of America Inc. She spoke at the meeting wearing a T-shirt printed with a Blue Star flag and the name of her son, Staff Sgt. Eric Richardson.
Richardson, 30, is a career soldier in the United States Army who served in Mosul, Iraq, in a striker brigade. He won the Purple Heart after sustaining a head injury during a mortar attack by Iraqi insurgents, Ellison said.
“He’s truly my hero,” Ellison said.
When a soldier dies, a gold star is stitched onto the flag.
Three men from Nevada County have died in military service in Iraq since the 2003 American invasion. They are Lance Cpl. Adam Strain, Lance Cpl. John Lucente and 1st Lt. Nathan Krissoff; all were with the U.S. Marines. A fourth man, U.S. Army Spc. Joseph Graves, had grandparents in Lake Wildwood.
Horne began the Sierra Nevada Chapter of Blue Star Mothers in June 2006. So far, there are 15 members.
The District 2 supervisor is the mother of Spc. Michael Horne, who served for a year in Iraq in the Army’s Fourth Infantry Division. He now is serving in the California Army National Guard and sat in the audience of Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting.
So far, the county has not set a date or planned a ceremony for the flag raising.
To learn more about Blue Star Mothers of America, e-mail Ellison at firstname.lastname@example.org. The group meets 10 a.m. every fourth Saturday at Paulette’s Country Kitchen.
To contact Staff Writer Laura Brown, e-mail laurab @theunion.com or call 477-4231.
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