Military Awards and Decorations
Provided by Andy GERO
How does one request military awards and decorations that they never received at discharge, or were lost or damaged?
• For the veteran: In general, the military services will replace medals requested for the veteran at no cost. This includes for family members with the signed authorization of the veteran.
• For next-of-kin: The process (and cost) for replacement medals requests differs among the service branches and is dependent upon who is requesting the medal, particularly if the request involves an archival record.
Who is the next-of-kin (NOK)?
• For the Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard, the NOK is defined as the unmarried spouse, son or daughter, father or mother, brother or sister.
• For the Army, the NOK is defined as the surviving spouse, eldest child, father or mother, eldest sibling or eldest grandchild.
To obtain an application for a one-time replacement of medals issued by various military branches go to: http://www.archives.gov/veterans/replace-medals.html.
How do I apply for a Cold War Recognition Certificate? Contact the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration at (866) 272-6272. In accordance with section 1084 of the Fiscal Year 1998 National Defense Authorization Act, the Secretary of Defense approved awarding Cold War Recognition Certificates to all members of the armed forces and qualified federal government civilian personnel who faithfully served the United States during the Cold War from Sept. 2, 1945 to Dec. 26, 1991.
Andy Gero is a life member of the VFW, Post 1614 and the American Legion, Post 288 in La Crescenta. He may be reached through the CV Weekly at (818) 248-2740, or write Crescenta Valley Weekly at 3800 La Crescenta, Ave., Suite 101, La Crescenta 91214.