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By Staff Sgt. Joshua Horton, 123rd Airlift Wing Public Affairs
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Hundreds of Gold Star family members were honored at the tenth annual Survivors Day at the Races at Churchill Downs on Nov. 3, 2019.
Force Gen. Joseph Lengyel, chief of the National Guard Bureau, Army Maj. Gen.
Stephen Hogan, Kentucky’s adjutant general, and other military leaders joined
the event to pay their respects to the nearly 1,000 family members of fallen
service members in attendance.
throughout the day kept attendees entertained, but according to Amy Quimby, the
Airman and Family Readiness program manager for the 123rd Airlift Wing, the
opportunities to connect with survivors is what really makes the event a success.
provides support, it connects people who know and understand each other’s loss,
and lifelong friendships are created,” Quimby said. “There are people here who
traveled from 19 different states. You just see their smiles as they see each
“I had an opportunity to talk to the mother of a service member who was killed,” Quimby continued. “This was the first event she attended. Being here has brought some peace to her knowing that there are other people going through the same thing she is and that they understand.”
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the day was a race named in honor of the Survivors of Fallen Military Heroes.
Family members were randomly selected to present the trophy to the winning
jockey and owners in the winner’s circle.
Survivor’s Day at the Races began in 2010
with Churchill Downs donating 120 tickets on behalf of Military surviving
family members. The event made quite an
impression on those in attendance to include corporate leaders. In 2011, Humana Government Business came forward
with financial support as long as the Survivor Outreach Services team continued
ownership of the event. With the help of
Churchill Downs and Humana, Survivor’s Day at the Races is now the largest SOS
event in the nation.