SOMERVILLE, NJ – The Somerset County Clerk's Office is issuing Gold Star Parent ID cards to biological parents, legal guardians and other legal custodians of members of the armed forces who died while on active duty for the United States.
The cards identify the holder as a Gold Star Parent and include the branch of armed forces in which their son or daughter served and other personal information. The Gold Star Parent program provides access to discounts and other courtesies, including free or reduced admission to New Jersey beaches, state parks and forests, the New Jersey State Museum and some businesses, according to Somerset County Clerk Steve Peter.
“These service members gave their lives to protect the freedoms we enjoy in the U.S. today,” Peter said. “I’m proud to be able to help the Gold Star parents as they carry on the legacy of their son or daughter.”
To apply for the card, county residents need to provide the County Clerk’s Office with the service member’s report of casualty form (DD-1300) or certification from a recognized organization, such as American Gold Star Mothers, Inc., which was founded in the wake of World War I. Proof of relationship is also required.
If passed, a bill that was recently introduced in Trenton could expand the Gold Star designation to spouses and children and might also clarify the classification of parents to include adoptive parents.
For more information, contact Peter at (908) 231-7013 orCountyClerk@co.somerset.nj.us.