Massachusetts Bay Commuter Railroad today unveiled the United State’s first-ever Gold Star Memorial train. The passenger coach, which bears the names of every soldier, marine, sailor and airman who lost their lives while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, features Gold Star memorial emblems atop of patriotic image.
The Gold Star Memorial coach will travel thousands of miles across Massachusetts and Rhode Island as a reminder of all of our fallen heroes who gave their lives during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.
“With so many veterans employed by the railroad, it is a privilege to operate this one-of-a-kind traveling memorial for those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country and their families,” said MBCR General Manager Hugh J. Kiley, Jr. “MBCR is honored to operate the memorial train across the MBTA commuter rail system.”
The new train coach was unveiled at ceremony today at Boston’s South Station, with dignitaries from across the state on hand to salute the memorial. While roads and bridges are often named after armed service veterans, the launch of the first-ever memorial train coach is an extension of the transportation community's recognition of military service. More than 30,000 veterans have returned to Massachusetts from the Global War on Terror and Overseas Contingency Operation.
“Massachusetts is proud to honor all veterans who have bravely served our Commonwealth and country,” said Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray, chair of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Veterans’ Services. “With the launch of the United State’s first-ever memorial train, Massachusetts will have the unique opportunity to recognize our military servicemen and women who sacrificed their lives for our country during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.”
“This coach will serve as a rolling memorial to those service members and their families who gave the ultimate sacrifice,” said Massachusetts Secretary of Veterans Affairs Coleman Nee. “It heartens me to know that this memorial will be on the tracks, passing through cities and towns across the Commonwealth as a reminder of these brave heroes and their dedication.”