ROCK ISLAND, Ill. - Army Sustainment Command's top NCO, Command Sgt. Maj. Stephen D. Blake, spoke to the Rock Island Rotary Club on the importance of Memorial Day during the group’s May 31 meeting at the Quad City Botanical Center.

Reminding the audience that Memorial Day marks a time to pause and remember Servicemen and women who gave their lives in the name of freedom, Blake took note of several Quad-City area Gold Star families in attendance. (Gold Star Families are the survivors of a Service member who died in a combat zone while serving in any branch of the armed forces.)

One Gold Star Family member, Teri Johnson, lost her son Jason in a suicide bomber attack in Iraq in April 2009. She said her search for a way to turn her grief into something positive for the troops led to Jason's Box Project that provides packages filled with bits of home for deployed Servicemen and women.