The National Garden Clubs, Inc. have had a program in place to honor service men & women since 1945. It's the Blue Star Memorial Program, and it began with the planting of 8,000 Dogwood trees by the New Jersey Council of Garden Clubs in 1944 as a living memorial to veterans of World War II. The following year the National Council of Garden Clubs, as it was called at the time, adopted the program and began a Blue Star Highway system, which covers thousands of miles across the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii. A large metal Blue Star Highway Marker was placed in appropriate locations along the way.
The program expanded to include all men and women who had served, were serving or would serve in the armed services of the United States. Memorial Markers and By-way Markers were added to the Highway Markers, to be used at locations such as National cemeteries, parks, veteran's facilities and gardens. The Blue Star became an icon in World War II and was seen on flags and banners in homes for sons and daughters away at war, as well as in churches and businesses.
This program has been active all through the years to the present, a fitting tribute always and especially now. Many states and regions have been very dedicated, but there is room for growth in some areas.
Anchor Point - 16 miles from Kenai dedicated 7/22/1970
Anchorage - 6th and Juneau Streets dedicated 6/19/1974
Juneau - Gone Missing dedicated 06/1990
Wasilla - Iditapark dedicated 9/16/2010
Ketchikan - Alaska Marine Highway Terminal dedicated 6/4/1974
Tok - Visitors Center (Junction of SR1 & SR2) dedicated 8/15/1973
Fairbanks - Weeks Field dedicated 6/11/1979
Eagle River - Chief Alex Park dedicated 6/24/2019