All male descendants, adopted sons and stepsons of members of The American Legion, and such male decendants of veterans who died in service during World I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, the Persian Gulf War, and the War on Terrorism, during the delimiting periods set forth in Article IV, Section1, of the National Constitution of The American Legion, or who died subsequent to their honorable discharge from such service, shall be eligible for membership in the Sons of The American Legion.
There shall be no forms or class of membership except an active membership.
What are the Active Duty Service Eligibility Dates?
Potenial S.A.L. members should use these dates to determine if their parents or grandparents are/were eligible for membership in The American Legion.
- April 6, 1917 to Nov. 11, 1918 (World War I)
- Dec. 7, 1941 to Dec. 31, 1946 (World War II)
- June 25, 1950 to Jan. 31, 1955 (Korean War)
- Feb. 28, 1961 to May 7, 1975 (Vietnam War)
- Aug. 24, 1982 to July 31, 1984 (Lebanon / Grenada)
- Dec. 20, 1989 to Jan. 31, 1990 (Panama)
- Aug. 2, 1990 to today (Gulf War / War On Terrorism)
I am eligible to join, now how do I prove it?
The American Legion establishes proof of eligibility based on a DD-214 form. The DD-214, or DD Form 214 is a document of the United States armed forces issued by the Department of Defense upon a military service member’s separation or discharge from the active duty military.
The full name of the document is “Defense Department Form 214”, however the document is often shortened to be called a DD-214, DD Form 214 or simply as a “sep doc”. A DD-214 is also commonly referred to as “Discharge Papers”, however this is slightly misleading as the document is more often issued for release from active duty and transfers to the inactive reserves than it is for final discharge from the military.
DD-214 is widely regarded as one of the most important documents in the military as it is a complete record of a service member’s time in the military, awards and medals, and other pertinent service information such as promotions, combat service or overseas service, and Military Occupational Specialty identifiers. DD-214 is commonly used by various government agencies, chief among them the Department of Veterans Affairs, to secure veteran benefits.
Where can I find the DD-214 form?
If the veteran through whom you qualify doesn’t already have their DD-214 form readily available then the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) has provided a website for veterans to gain access to their DD-214 online: www.vetrecs.archives.gov. This may be particularly helpful when a veteran needs a copy of his DD-214 for employment purposes or for membership in The American Legion.
Veterans and the next of kin of deceased veterans may now use a new online military personnel records system to request documents. Other individuals with a need for documents must still complete the Standard Form 180, which can also be downloaded from the online web site. Because the person making the request will be asked to supply all information essential for NPRC to process the request, delays that normally occur when NPRC has to ask veterans for additional information will be minimized.
Sons are encouraged to pass this information on to former military personnel and their dependents.
I have the DD-214 form, what’s next?
Either stop by our Post or call us and we will be happy to help you.
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