Paratrooper from the 101st Airborne Brigade applying mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to an injured soldier who was airlifted by helicopter to the medical clearing station near Kontum, Vietnam; Photo from The New York Public Library

Honoring those who served U.S.

From Staff Reports and the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs

Governor Ron DeSantis has signed the annual Vietnam War Veterans Day in Florida Proclamation, that upholds March 29 as the day to celebrate, in accordance with the Vietnam War Veterans Recognition Act signed into law in 2017.

With 1.5 million veterans, Florida is the most veteran-friendly state in the nation, according to the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs. And with one out of every three veterans in Florida is specifically a Vietnam-era veteran, it’s why this particular day of honor is so important. Commemorating the sacrifices of Vietnam veterans and their families is part of a national effort to recognize the men and women who were denied a proper welcome upon returning home more than 40 years ago.

Hopefully every ‘thank you’ we give, and moment taken to truly honor their amazing sacrifices, will help erase those missed days from before.

Many states celebrate “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day” on March 29 or 30 of each year. Though there is some debate, March 29 is generally viewed as a more appropriate date. On that day in 1973, the last combat troops were withdrawn from Vietnam and the last prisoners of war held in North Vietnam arrived on American soil. It is also the date President Nixon chose for the first Vietnam Veterans Day in 1974.

Nominate your favorite veteran to the Veteran’s Hall of Fame

The State of Florida established the Florida Veterans’ Hall of Fame in 2013 to recognize and honor those military veterans who, through their works and lives during or after military service, have made a significant contribution to the State of Florida.  In selecting its nominees for submission to the Governor and Cabinet, the Council will give preference to veterans who were either born in Florida or adopted Florida as their home state. The individuals they choose will have made a significant contribution to the state in civic, business, public service, or other pursuits.

Nominations are now being accepted and submission will be closed on May 31, 2021.

What does it take to get nominated?

a) Meets the definition of “Veteran” as defined by section 1.01 of Florida Statutes as determined by Department of Defense documentation, such as a DD Form 214, or proof of service from the Florida National Guard with a NGB Form 22.

b) Received an honorable discharge from the United States Armed Forces and can provide official documentation verifying discharge status.

c) Has exhibited good moral character.

d) Posthumous nominations are accepted. Records to document military service are still required. If no DD Form 214 or NGB Form 22 is available, provide other documentation to include discharge papers, news articles, affidavits, official letters of service from a branch of service, the DoD, or the Florida National Guard, or other documentation that can be verified. (To obtain copy of military service records, go to www.archives.gov/veterans)

e) Employees of the Governor’s staff, all elected or appointed officials in the State of Florida, members of County Veteran Service Offices and members of the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs, its Foundation and the Veterans’ Hall of Fame Council are ineligible for induction until two years after they have left their position. The Veterans’ Hall of Fame Council may recommend a waiver of the two year requirement for nominees over the age of 70.

Nomination Forms and Guidelines

The selection process will be conducted using a uniform Nomination Form.  A guide pamphlet will give you all the information necessary to fill out the Nomination Form.

Click for a tour of what the Hall of Fame is all about and what it does

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