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With Memorial Day coming up at the end of this month, the Missouri National Guard has announced new additions to its Veterans Recognition War Medallion Program.

Those to be recognized receive a medal, medallion, certificate and letters from the adjutant general of the Missouri National Guard, the secretary of state and the governor. Individuals and groups may request award ceremonies.

The application can be found by visiting www.moguard.ngb.mil/resources/veteran-awards.

Programs exist for World War II (since 2000), Korea (2004) and Vietnam (2006) veterans. The Guard is adding two new programs: Desert Shield/Storm and Iraqi Freedom/New Dawn.

Sylvia Bennett, program director for the Missouri National Guard Veterans Recognition Office, said the program is open to current residents and to veterans who entered or discharged military service in Missouri. There is no fee to participate.

The program honors Missourians who served on active duty from:

Dec. 7, 1941-Dec. 31, 1946, World War II veterans;

June 6, 1944-Sept. 30, 1944, and participated in the Battle of Normandy (Jubilee of Liberty);

June 27, 1950-Jan. 31, 1955, Korean War veterans;

Feb. 28, 1961-May 7, 1975, Vietnam War veterans;

Aug. 7, 1990-June 7, 1991, Desert Shield and Desert Storm veterans;

March 19, 2003-Dec. 15, 2011, Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn veterans.

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

Veterans may apply for the program if their service was classified as honorable and if he or she was: a legal resident of Missouri at the time of application; was a legal resident of Missouri upon entering or discharge from military service or at the time of death; or served in a unit of the Missouri National Guard, regardless of ever being a legal resident of Missouri. Anyone who is still serving may also apply as long as he or she serves in an honorable status, Bennett said.

Additionally, any spouse or eldest-living survivor of a service member who meets eligibility requirements but died before applying is entitled to recognition.

Documentation of service is a requirement, as is the Social Security number of the service member. Some acceptable forms include a DD Form 214: Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty; DA Form 2-1: Personnel Qualification Record; induction or discharge paperwork; official documentation of medals with dates of service; and a newspaper clipping from the era of service that includes service dates.

Completed applications and copies of documentation may be mailed to the Office of the Adjutant General, Attn: Veterans Recognition Program, P.O. Box 1808, Jefferson City, MO, 65102.

For more information, call 1-573-638-9561 or email [email protected]

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