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Pensacola Gold Star mother visits President; hopes to start new chapter

June 6 2018

Lauren Wolfe | WEARTV

PENSACOLA, Fla. (WEAR) — A Pensacola Gold Star mother visited President Donald Trump in Washington D.C. along with other Gold Star families. Suzi Fernandez told Channel 3 News that she is now working to start a new Gold Star chapter in Northwest Florida.

Suzi Fernandez did not choose to wear a gold pin.

"A gold star family is a club that you never want to be in," said Fernandez.

The pin was given to her after the loss of her son, United States Air Force veteran Sgt. Forest Sibley. 

"His 5th deployment in Afghanistan he was ambushed by the Taliban on his third checkpoint," said Fernandez. 

Since her son's death in August of 2015, Fernandez said she never wants to stop talking about him and all of his achievements. 

"My first born. He was afraid of nothing and wanted to serve our country," said Fernandez.

So when she received an invite to speak with President Donald Trump, she accepted without hesitation. Despite the heat the president took during the election regarding a Gold Star family, she said that she felt it was important to go and talk about her son once more.

"I was fortunate enough to tell him that. I said my son was such a supporter of you. That he would have voted for you had he been here…. The President said he believed that many of our soldiers felt the same way. I expressed my appreciation for his commitment to the military and he certainly thanked us for that," said Fernandez.

Fernandez met other Gold Star families on her journey. She told Channel 3 News that her Air Force angel was guiding her along the way.

"I know he was.. again we're talking about gold star families… we have this bond you can't describe," said Fernandez.

She said that she was inspired by her trip, therefore she is now working to start a Gold Star chapter in Northwest Florida.

"When you lose someone… you want to give back. It's an innate feeling I can't describe. We can't help enough. We can't feel like we need to give back as much as they give to us. I know we lost... but we want to give back." 

If you are interested in becoming part of the Gold Star chapter in Northwest Florida contact Lauren Wolfe by emailing her at