Missouri seeks to honor veterans with war medallion programs

The Labor Movement has its share of military veterans and the state of Missouri wants to honor them.

According to Sylvia J. Bennett, director of Missouri National Guard Veterans Recognition Program, the state is seeking to highlight the sacrifices of and the deceased veterans who participated in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, Operations Desert Shield/Desert Storm, and Operations Iraqi Freedom/New Dawn with its War Medallion recognition program.

Proposed House Bill 1496 creating an award for Afghanistan (Enduring Freedom/Operation Freedom’s Sentinel and Operation Allies Refuge) is currently pending legislative approval.

Those to be recognized receive a medal, medallion (coin), a certificate and letters from state officials (the adjutant general, Missouri National Guard, secretary of state and governor).

These programs are administered through the Missouri National Guard and funded through the legislative budget process with Veterans Commission Capital Trust Fund Monies.

Veterans, surviving spouses or if no surviving spouse the oldest living next of kin of a deceased veteran who meets the eligibility requirements:

  • Served on Active Duty in the United States Military during the stated conflict date(s).
  • Be a legal resident of Missouri, either at the time of application; at the time he/she entered or discharged from military active service; or at the time of his/her death; or served on active duty while in a unit of the Missouri National Guard regardless of residency
  • Received an honorable discharge, or still active in an honorable status

The War medallion, medal and certificate shall be awarded regardless of if the veteran served within the United States or in a foreign county. 

According to Bennett, the Missouri Veterans Recognition War Medallion Program honors Missourians who served on active duty during the periods:

  • Dec. 7, 1941 to Dec. 31, 1946 (WWII).
  • June 6, 1944 to Sept. 30, 1944 (participated in the Battle of Normandy. (Jubilee of Liberty).
  • June 27, 1950 to Jan. 31, 1955 (Korea).
  • Feb. 28, 1961 to May 7, 1975 (Vietnam).
  • Aug. 7, 1990 to June 7, 1991 (Desert Shield and Desert Storm).
  • March 19, 2003 to Dec. 15, 2011 (Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn).

Service members did not have to be stationed overseas during the time periods mentioned to receive awards; only one award per conflict per veteran will be presented.

Documentation of service is a requirement as is the Social Security number of the service member. Some acceptable forms include a discharge document, DD Form 214: Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty; induction or discharge paperwork; official documentation of medals with dates of service; and newspaper clipping from the era of service that include service dates.  Veterans Recognition office can provide assistance to locate documentation if needed.

The application and full eligibility requirements can be found by visiting https://www.moguard.ngb.mil/resources/veteran-awards.

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