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Stupid Here! The Flags of Honor Escorts Have Arrived

Flags of Honor Escorts honors fallen heroes and Gold Star Families in Florida. David McElroy talking to middle school students

Every April, Flags of Honor Escorts and its founder, David “Stupid” McElroy, travel the state of Florida to visit Gold Star Families Memorial Monuments (GSFMM). Medal of Honor recipient and American hero Hershel “Woody” Williams inspired the monuments.

Affectionately known as Woody, this World War II veteran made it his mission to honor the families of service members who made the ultimate sacrifice. Since 2015, the Woody Williams Foundation has installed 132 monuments, with another 62 underway.

Flags of Honor Escorts organizes motorcades and ceremonies to highlight Gold Star Families and monuments in each community they visit with their Florida Gold Star Families Memorial Ride.

McElroy says the Gold Star Children have the biggest impact on the mission.

Only Tampa’s Florida Gold Star Families Memorial Ride lasts multiple days since Tampa is home to two existing monuments and will soon have a third.

The first Tampa monument, located at Franklin Middle Magnet School and dedicated in 2015, was very special to Woody and thus a favorite stop for Stupid and his entourage.

It was the students of Franklin who made that monument come to life.

“Because of the Franklin Middle Magnet School students, this will always be one of my favorite GSFMMs to visit,” McElroy says. “Meeting and speaking with these students each year reminds us that we all have a legacy to leave, not just of ourselves, but for those who come behind us to find ownership in themselves.”

The students, likewise, enjoy the visits. What kid wouldn’t like calling someone “Stupid” without consequence? While the visit is entertaining, it is also profoundly engaging for the students.

McElroy visited the Franklin monument to film a short video just hours before the passing of Hershel “Woody” Williams to honor his service.

“This GSFMM was one Woody held very close to heart because of the sacrifice, service, and impact these children have made in Tampa and the Gold Star Community,” McElroy said.

In April, Flags of Honor Escorts will hold the Gold Star Families Memorial Ride, visiting the Tampa area on April 16-18, 2024. For more information on the memorial rides, contact

To learn more about the inspirational story behind the fundraising efforts for the Tampa Gold Star Families Memorial Monument at Franklin Middle Magnet School, visit

Written By: Kristy Verdi


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