One weeknight at Auntie Pastas in Nacogdoches a group of women sat together, all wearing matching shirts.
At first glance it may seem like they’re just enjoying a night out, but they are really working diligently to organize their newly formed chapter of Blue Star Mothers.
“What does it mean to be a Blue Star Mother? It means that either we have a child who is currently serving in the military or has served in the military,” said Kim McDonald, founder of the Blue Star Mothers chapter in Nacogdoches.
McDonald has the Brady Bunch of the Blue Star Moms.
“My case, I lucked out,” she said. “I have a daughter who is a veteran and two ex son-in-laws who are veterans, my youngest daughter is an Army wife and a son-in-law who is active duty so we got it all covered.”
Like many military moms, McDonald wanted a group she could relate to and confide in, a group who would be able to empathize with her situation.
She eventually joined a chapter of Blue Star Mothers in the Houston area, but after moving to Nacogdoches, she had to start one herself.
“No matter where you are on your military journey someone in the group is either going through it with you, has gone through it, or is about to go through it,” McDonald said. “So you’ve got the support that you need.”
So began her three year journey finding and recruiting local moms to join the cause.
Eventually she found Anita Scott, who is a proud Army mom.
“At the time I was too busy and wasn’t able to commit to anything,” said Anita Scott. “I told them to call me back and we would talk about it.”
A year went by and she was able to do a lot of thinking.
“I was thinking my son and what he has sacrificed for us and wanting to do more to show my support for the military and to me that was a no-brainer that I had to be a part of it,” Scott said.
Another new member found along the way was Sherry Sevey, who has sons in the Air Force and Navy and is the wife of the Nacogdoches police chief.
Summed up, she says, being a Blue Star Mom consists of four things.
“It’s a lot of pride, it’s a lot of love, some worry in there and a lot of prayers,” said Sherry Sevey.
Before Blue Star Moms the group already had joyous occasions with their military kids.
In 2017 scott was able to coordinate with her son and others to give his dad a surprise Christmas present he will never forget.
“When my son was coming back from a deployment we surprised his dad in Vegas and that was a lot of fun,” said Anita Scott. “I look forward to doing that with other families.”
But welcome home parties are only a fraction of what Blue Star Mothers does.
“We have had a packing party which is where we got together and we packed boxes to send to the troops,” said McDonald. “We have had a sendoff for a young soldier heading for boot camp which was really exciting, we plan on participating in area parades so that people kind of learn that we’re here and what we’re about, we’ve spoken at several veterans celebrations for veterans around the community we’ve spoken at a few of those and got more on the line up to come.”
In order for more of that to happen, they will need the recognition and they will need the members.
“It’s an honor to wear this star because it represents my loved one,” said Scott “We hope that by people hearing this that they too will want join us and the bigger the better.”
Serving our country not on the battlefield or a base, but at home banding together with all the military families.