When Kentucky-native and U.S. Army Specialist Brandon Mullins drove into the desert region of the Kandahar province in Afghanistan on Aug. 25, 2011, he didn’t realize he was in for the fight of his life.
Before heading out on deployment, Mullins left his mother a voicemail saying, “I’m all grown, 21, and living on my own. Going away today for a little bit. Don’t worry. I’ll be back. I’ll be home. I’m going to make it back.” A few months later his unit was attacked with a rudimentary explosive device and he lost his life.
“Brandon was a talented hockey player and very popular with the ladies,” said his mother, Cathy Mullins. “He didn’t just die. He died for his country. People have sacrificed their lives so we can enjoy things like state fairs and going to church.”
On Sunday Aug. 19, the Kentucky State Fair will honor military members, veterans and their families during the Oak Ridge Boys free concert. Cathy Mullins, along with 40 Gold Star families, will attend with the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation. Gold Star families are those, like the Mullins, who have lost family members during military service. The foundation honors Gold Star families with monuments and memorials throughout the country.
“They sacrificed their son for the freedoms that we enjoy and they don’t really get any recognition for it,” said Brent Casey, director of the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation. “Our goal at the foundation is to help educate the public that there are families among us who have given a whole lot more than we have, they’ve given one of their own family members for the freedom we enjoy today.”
Ceremony participants include:
During Military Sunday on Aug. 19, free admission is available online for military members, veterans and their family (up to 4 people). Details are available on GovX.com. Parking is not included. The 2018 Kentucky State Fair is Aug. 16-26 at the Kentucky Exposition Center. To purchase tickets and parking or for more information, visit www.kystatefair.org or download our Kentucky State Fair app.
The Texas Roadhouse Free Concert Series is located at the Bluegrass Village on the west side of the Kentucky Exposition Center.