Gold Star Veterans - Yuma County, Colorado

    This listing of Yuma County servicemen and servicewomen who died in the service of their country was originally compiled by the Yuma Museum and the Yuma American Legion Post. The accompanying photographs were taken or collected by them unless otherwise credited.

    These pages are dedicated to Stephen K. Chaplin (1941-2004) - area historian, Yuma museum board member, faithful critic of my "facts", fellow Army veteran and long time contributor to this Yuma County website - who succumbed to cancer April 18, 2004. Steve wouldn't allow me to credit him by name for doing the research to put together the six, thick, loose-leaf notebooks that were used as the starting point for this list of Gold Star Veterans, insisting that I credit the Yuma Museum and the Yuma Legion Post instead.

    An old military toast, to both Specialist 4th Class Steve Chaplin and to the many veteran's listed here, seems appropriate, "To absent friends and comrades."

    Many of the obituary transcriptions published here were donated by Pat Oestman, 529 Ash St, Wray, CO 80758. Thank you Pat!

    Arlene Glenn of Otis has been tireless in tracking down information on and headstone photographs for those buried outside the county. Thanks Arlene!

Gold Star FlagBlue and Gold Star Flags

    The practice of displaying a service banner or ribbon to recognize members of the family serving in the armed forces dates back to at least the Spanish American War and perhaps to the Civil War. The current design of a red and white flag with a blue service star (Blue Star Flag) for each serving family member originated in 1917 during World War I. After 1918 when President Wilson ordered a Gold Star pin given to the mothers of dead WWI servicemen, the blue service star on the service banner was covered with a gold star to honor those killed in service. Another variation had the the blue star covered with a silver star to honor those invalided home from wounds received in action. The design wasn't standardized until World War II.

    Blue Star Flags were widely displayed by families during World War II. A Gold Star Flag and Gold Star Certificate presentation to the family were a routine part of a World War II memorial service. Service flags were seldom seen during the Vietnam War but have been making a comeback since 1990.

    If you have comments, corrections, photographs, clippings, award citations or any other additional information about these veterans please contact Lee Zion, email, 23288 County Road 27, Vernon, CO 80755.

    If you have additions, corrections, photographs or clippings to add to this list please contact Lee C. Zion email

Return to the Yuma County Veterans Listing.

Return to the Yuma County Data Page.