Gold Star Mothers form support group - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Gold Star Mothers form support group

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JACKSONVILLE -

The death toll from the war in Afghanistan reaches 2,000 but meanwhile here in the U.S. each dead American is a family left behind.

A new group to the Natural State hopes to help out grieving mothers.

Sunday marked National Gold Star Mother's Day, and for the past 30 years the last Sunday in September is to honor those mother's who have lost kids while fighting for our freedom.

However, the battles aren't only being fought on foreign land as we learned while speaking with a few grieving mothers.

Around 100 people visited the Jacksonville Museum of Military History as eight mothers were honored with a flag and gold star memorial.

People came to show support and respect to the mothers left behind from a soldier's death.

"It was really, really hard but it helped me a lot," said Katharina Reed.

"You take on a whole new sense of patriotism when you lose a child," added fellow gold star mother Deborah Johnson.

"I think we can talk to one another and truly say 'I know what you're feeling,' or 'I know what you're going through,'" added Noramae Shaw.

Since 2003 almost 4,500 Americans have been killed while fighting in Iraq according to icasualties.org.

Just recently in Afghanistan the 2,000th American soldier was killed.

"It's important that we constantly remember. It's easy to forget, there are so many that are dying across the country and across our state that it's easy to forget," Johnson added.

"It was years before I could listen to the anthem without crying. It was always a touching song to me but it means a lot to me now," Shaw said.

Even when some return home from the war they fight a new battle: posttraumatic stress disorder. Taking their own lives.

"He was fun he enjoyed life. He loved his sister and his mom. I just miss him you know," Reed remembered of her son who suffered from PTSD.

The leader of the Arkansas chapter said the non-profit group is there to be a support staff for one another, especially the ones who have lost a solder to PTSD.

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