Are you Eligible?
The fundamental difference between the VFW and other veteran organizations, and one in which we take great pride, is our eligibility qualifications.
There are three requisites for membership in the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States:
- Honorable military service
- Service entitling the applicant to the award of a recognized campaign medal or as set forth in the Congressional Charter and/or VFW bylaws.
Checking eligibility is comparatively simple, assuming the first two requirements are met. The next step would be to check eligibility. A potential applicant must have served overseas and earned a campaign or service medal recognized by the VFW as meeting the campaign medal requisite for VFW membership. (The only exceptions are a combat action ribbon, imminent danger pay or for service in Korea after June 30, 1949, until present.)
Discharges issued during and immediately after the close of World War II have a section on the back listing the medals and decorations which have been earned. Persons discharged later received a DD-214, “Report of Separation” form, which has a space showing medals and decorations.
Lost separation documents can be replaced by completing and submitting Standard Form 180, “Request Pertaining to Military Records.” There is always a possibility of an omission on the separation documents. If an applicant claims entitlement to a medal which is not shown on the individual’s separation papers, that person may request verification and correction of records by submitting a Standard Form 180.
The Standard Form 180 is available from any office of the Veterans Administration