Monday, October 8, 2012

Blue Star Mothers Michigan Convention

Wow, what a weekend!!! Anytime you can spend a weekend with girlfriends who are like-minded and united for the same cause you can't go wrong! Blue Star Mothers of America Department of Michigan held their annual convention this past weekend at the Doherty Hotel in Clare, MI. There was so much significance to the selection of the host hotel. CPL James A Reeder, KIA July 16, 1950 was the uncle of two brothers who currently manage the hotel which has been in the family since 1924 when it was built. We had breakfast with brother Jim Doherty on Friday morning and learned the extensive military of his family which continues today with his two daughters currently serving. Blue Star Mothers Chapter  MI 33 is named for James Reeder and is located in nearby Farwell, MI. It was very fitting to have our Convention here as this is the 70th Anniversary of Blue Star Mothers. Like the Military, Blue Star Mothers is very rich in tradition and ceremony.

Friday night we had Big Dipper Fun Night. A fun event to raise money for educational assistance for a worthy son/daughter, grandson/granddaughter of BSMA member or veteran as well as a veteran or active duty personnel. Our theme this year was movie night and you can see we had a great time dressed as Toy Story characters! 

Saturday we had a mix of education, speakers and a memorial service for our fallen warriors and mothers since last year. Particularly humbling was a wall honoring our fallen from Michigan beginning with Desert Shield/Desert Storm to present. The wall was brought to us by Veterans of Modern Warfare, they share our mission of helping veterans with needs that are not met through other conventional avenues. 

I was very proud to be a part of a check presentation to VFW National Home for Children from our Chapter, BSM MI 180, so that they can purchase a swing set for the children that has been on their wish list. We have been blessed with some generous donations and it was so gratifying to be able to give them something that they need. We also had presentations from the VA to learn about the programs that they have to offer for our veterans and how we can work together for a common cause.

We ended our weekend by coming together and electing a new board to carry out our mission for the coming year. Boards for the Department and Big Dipper were elected and installed. Great weekend with 50 friends new and old from around the state as well as our National President who came in from San Francisco!!