Guest Interview with Joyce Fabian
Bio / Info
Our Guest will be Joyce Fabian.
Joyce has been a member in a family of Military that goes all the way back to the Boer War. Her father was a staff soldier in the Army during WWII. He served in the Philippines. Her husband served in Korea, her brother served in Vietnam, his son, her nephew was also in the Navy during peace time. Her son is a recently retired Colonel in the United States Army and served 7 Deployments.
She is a graduate of Fitzgerald High School (1958). She married and had two children, a son and a daughter. Her son is Colonel Norman Fabian, and Daughter is Holly Fabian. When her children were in their teens she went to work for the Warren Police Department in 1978, serving as a 911 Communication Operator, and Jail Matron. She retired from there July 4th 1995. She has 11 Department Commendations, and one Award from Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor for Outstanding Law Enforcement Service. (1990)
Her son was accepted in the United States Merchant Marine Academy, once he graduated High School. He served in the Navy for years until he transferred to the Army. She learned about the organization Blue Star Mothers from a newspaper article that included a phone number to the President of the Chapter, Blue Water 180. She has been a member of that organization for the last 12 years. This is an organization that was founded in Flint Michigan in 1942 and fully supports the Mothers of our Military, past, present, and in some instances those to be.
She has served as First Vice President, Second Vice President, and Third Vice President of her Chapter. She has been since joining the BSM, the Blue to Gold Liaison for her chapter. It is the duty of the liaison to attend the funerals for our casualties. She is Sgt. at Arms for the National President of Blue Star Mothers, Carla Brodacki, Historian for Liz Bohannon, State President of Blue Star Mothers of America and National Deputy for the VAVS. She joined with the Patriot Guard Riders to attend the "Welcome Home for the Troops" each Thanksgiving, and Christmas at the Flint Bishop Airport.
It is during one of these services when she was approached by the aunt of a fallen soldier who asked her how to get a "Gold Star License Plate" for her sister, the Mom of the fallen. She did not at that time know there was such a thing but told her she would find out. That began a two year long trek to get this plate for the state of Michigan. She learned that every state except 5 had a license plate dedicated to Gold Star Families, Michigan was not one of them. She learned a Senator Pappageorge had originally authored a bill for one and it was killed. She contacted him and asked what she needed to do to get this brought back up and passed. This was in 2010, She made many trips to Lansing to lobby for this plate, testifying before the Committee.
The bill finally made it to Governor Jennifer Grandholm who did not sign it to pass. She denied it. Joyce contacted Senator Pappageorge and said "Oh no we are going to do this until it passes" In 2011 she again made many trips to Lansing to pass this bill. On one of her trips, she said " I am going to keep coming here, and sitting in front of you for as many months or years as it takes me to get this done or you look up and say , NOT THAT WOMAN AGAIN". The Bill passed in 2011