Gold Star Families

Florida honors its Gold Star Families.  Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult things anyone can go through. Florida Survivor Outreach Services (SOS) connects you with people who can help you move forward and find strength.

SOS Support Coordinators are located strategically throughout Florida to provide long-term support and assistance to Families of the Fallen.

Services provided by Florida SOS:

  • Provide expertise on State and Federal survivor benefits.
  • Provide guidance and assistance to the family in regard to entitlements and local resources.
  • Arrange for estate and financial advice when requested.
  • Educate the military command, community social services and support agencies of the needs of our military survivors.
  • Form networks and support groups so survivors will have peer support readily available.
  • Connect survivors with appropriate mental health support/counseling as requested.
  • Supply survivors with resource referrals for peer support, bereavement counseling, emergency financial services, Tricare, educational benefits, military reports and military benefits.


Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS)

TAPS is the national nonprofit organization providing compassionate care and comprehensive resources for all those grieving the death of a military or veteran loved one.

Since 1994, TAPS has provided comfort and hope 24/7 through a national peer support network and connection to grief resources, all at no cost to surviving families and loved ones.

TAPS provides a variety of programs to survivors nationally and worldwide. Our National Military Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Camp has been held annually in Washington, D.C., over Memorial Day weekend since 1994. TAPS also conducts regional survivor seminars for adults and youth programs at locations across the country, as well as retreats and expeditions around the world. Staff can get you connected to counseling in your community and help navigate benefits and resources.

If you are grieving the loss of a fallen service member, or if you know someone who can use our support, the TAPS 24/7 National Military Survivor Helpline is always available toll-free with loving support and resources at 800-959-TAPS (8277).

For more information, visit www.taps.org.


Governor DeSantis Signs Bill Supporting Gold Star Families

Honor and remember flag poster

TAMPA – On June 26, 2019, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed CS/CS/HB 427: Honor and Remember Flag, at the University of South Florida’s Office of Veteran Success.

CS/CS/HB 427, sponsored by Rep. Tommy Gregory and Sen. Joe Gruters, allows the flying of a new flag, the Honor and Remember Flag, to serve as the state’s emblem of the service and sacrifice of the brave men and women of the United States Armed Forces who have given their lives in the line of duty. It allows the flag to be flown on Veterans Day, Gold Star Mother’s Day and a day on which a member of the United States Armed Forces who is a resident of Florida loses his or her life.

For more information on CS/CS/HB 427, read the bill summary HERE.


Gold Star License Plate

Gold Star Family Plate

The Gold Star license plate is a special license plate developed to honor the family members of a servicemember killed while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces. For more information, visit https://www.flhsmv.gov/motor-vehicles-tags-titles/personalized-specialty-license-plates/specialty-license-plates/.


Additional Information

Consult the following websites for assistance and additional resources.

Survivor Outreach Services (SOS)
https://www.armymwr.com/programs-and-services/personal-assistance/survivor-outreach

Navy Gold Star Program
https://www.navygoldstar.com

American Gold Star Mothers
https://www.goldstarmoms.com/

Gold Star Fathers of Florida
https://www.facebook.com/people/Gold-Star-Fathers-of-Florida-Inc/100064781076004/

Gold Star Awareness
www.goldstarawareness.com

Gold Star Wives
https://www.goldstarwives.org/

Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS)
https://www.taps.org/

Florida National Guard webpage on Survivor Outreach Services
https://fl.ng.mil/services/Pages/Survivor-Outreach-Services.aspx

Military OneSource
https://www.militaryonesource.mil/

Taps Natural Disaster Response
https://floridavets.org/wp-content/uploads/TAPS-Natural-Disaster-Response.pdf

Hershel “Woody” Williams Medal of Honor Foundation honoring Gold Star Families
https://woodywilliams.org/monument-overview.html