Veterans Benefits Information guide to VA benefits

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Veterans Benefits Information

Veteranpreneur Contest finalists: meet, vote and see the winner

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The finalists for the American Legion Family's Veteranpreneur Contest will appear on Fox & Friends on May 25, National Poppy Day®. Watch from 6-9 a.m. ET to meet the finalists and see their poppy-themed products.

The public can cast votes for their favorite poppy-themed product on May 25 only at The winner will be announced on Memorial Day, May 28.

The winning veteranpreneur will receive up to a $10,000 order for their product which will be sold in the online poppy shop through American Legion Emblem Sales.

After World War I, the red poppy became the memorial flower of the American Legion Family to honor those who fought and died during the war. The poppy has continued to serve as a symbol of honor and sacrifice, and the Legion Family encourages all Americans to wear or display a red poppy in support of National Poppy Day®.

The Legion's National Poppy Day® website at provides access to the Emblem Sales “Poppy Shop,” which offers an assortment of items such as Poppy Day pins, kits for making lapel poppies for distribution, fundraising containers, charms, scarves and more.

When showing National Poppy Day® support on social media, use the hashtags #PoppyDay and #LegionFamily.

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'Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero' screenings offered to American Legion posts

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Fun Academy Motion Pictures is offering American Legion posts nationwide opportunities to screen the critically acclaimed animated family film "Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero" beginning Memorial Day weekend (May 25) and continuing through Veterans Day (Nov. 11).

"Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero" received top critic scores after it was released in theatres nationwide on April 13. The film stars Logan Lerman, Helena Bonham Carter and Gérard Depardieu, and is based on the incredible true story of the first and most decorated dog in American history, Sgt. Stubby, a stray rescued off the streets of New Haven, Conn., by a U.S. Army doughboy on the eve of World War I and, given a chance, saved countless lives in the trenches of France. Sgt. Stubby is still recognized today as the first dog promoted through combat in U.S. Army history, and is widely seen as the forerunner of the modern military working dog program.

As one of the first animated films of its kind to be based on a true story, and the only World War I-themed film suitable for families to be released during this centennial commemoration year, "Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero" – which received the coveted Dove Foundation approval for all ages – remains a popular choice among families and organizations nationwide interested in history and quality family entertainment with an educational component.

This heartwarming story also has a real American Legion connection. Sgt. Stubby, who was smuggled into France and served on the front line in World War I, became famous for warning his unit of a gas attack, saving lives on the battlefield and even capturing a German prisoner. Following the war, Stubby marched in multiple Legion national convention parades, including the inaugural one in 1919 in Minneapolis. He was an official member of Eddy-Glover American Legion Post 6 in Connecticut, the only known canine to ever become an official member of the Legion.

“My theme all year has been Family First! Veterans and audiences of all ages – children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, everyone – will love Fun Academy’s animated film 'Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero,'” said National Commander Denise H. Rohan. “The American Legion and Sgt. Stubby were born of the same spirit – that of the American doughboy who fought to victory in 1918.”

Richard Lanni, the film's writer/director and founder of Fun Academy, “We are thrilled to join with The American Legion to bring this vital chapter in their history – our history – to veterans and their families.”

For more information about screenings for local American Legion posts, contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Click here to read more about the movie’s development.

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VA MISSION Act heads to the president’s desk

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The John S. McCain III, Daniel K. Akaka and Samuel R. Johnson VA Maintaining Internal Systems and Strengthening Integrated Outside Networks Act, also called the VA MISSION Act, passed its final hurdle May 23. The bipartisan bill overhauling health-care choices for veterans passed the Senate with a vote of 92-5, meeting the president’s Memorial Day deadline to take action on the issue.

The bill now heads to President Trump's desk to be signed into law.

“This is quite an accomplishment and we’re very proud of it,” said Louis Celli, American Legion executive director of Government and Veterans Affairs, during a May 22 press conference ahead of the Senate vote. “And that’s why 38 VSOs signed letters to support this legislation.”

The legislation includes provisions to consolidate community care programs into a single, streamlined service; provides sufficient funding to extend the program through the next year; expands comprehensive assistance; strengthens ability to recruit, hire and retain quality medical personnel; and reforms the VA’s health-care infrastructure. These provisions will address the inadequacies of the current system.

“The American Legion, together with our partners and allies in the veteran advocacy space, have worked tirelessly with the House and Senate to secure the passage of the VA MISSION Act of 2018,” American Legion National Commander Denise H. Rohan said. “On the behalf of our two million wartime veterans, we thank all the members of the U.S. Congress who worked with us to enact this important legislation.”

The legislation is expected to be signed into law by the president in the coming days.

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American Legion float wins 500 Festival Parade award

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The American Legion's entry in the IPL Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade, entitled "Peace Through Strength," received the President's Award for Most Original Concept during a reception at the Expo Design facility in Indianapolis on Wednesday, May 23.

The float features a replica of the “America’s Response” monument which overlooks the National September 11 Memorial and Museum in New York City. Sculptor Douwe Blumberg was inspired to create the original sculpture after seeing a photo of Green Berets in Afghanistan just weeks after 9/11.

National Commander Denise H. Rohan will ride the float in the parade, joined by three members of Task Force Dagger team who became known as the "Horse Soldiers."

The actions of the Task Force Dagger team that included Mark Nutsch, Will Summers and Chris Spence not only inspired the “America's Response” monument, but also the 2018 film “12 Strong.” Two actors from the film, Geoff Stults and Kenny Sheard, will also be a part of The American Legion's parade presence.

The IPL Indianapolis 500 Festival Parade on Saturday, May 26, will be telecast in central Indiana on WTHR Channel 13, and nationally on NBC Sports Network. Follow the parade on social media channels by searching #IPL500PARADE.

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Texas monument to honor American Legion centennial

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American Legion Past National Commander David K. Rehbein, chairman of The American Legion 100th Anniversary Observance Committee, speaks Monday at a 10 a.m. ceremony to dedicate a Legion centennial monument in Missouri City, Texas.

The 5-foot black granite marker, presented by Missouri City American Legion Post 294, features the Legion emblem and centennial logo. It will be unveiled in Missouri City’s 21-acre American Legion Park. The dedication also kicks off a $1.6 million project to install a new veterans memorial on adjacent city property.

Among the speakers and dignitaries at the ceremony will be American Legion Department of Texas Commander John Hince, Missouri City Mayor Allen Owen and Post 294 Centennial Chairman Denny Thibault.

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Did you know?

The issuance or replacement of military service medals, awards and decorations must be requested in writing.

Requests should be submitted in writing to the appropriate military service branch division of the NPRC. Standard form (SF 180), available through the VA, is recommended to submit your request. Generally, there is no charge for medal or award replacements. For more information, or for the mailing address of the military branch office to submit your request to, call 1-86-NARA-NARA (1-866-272-6272) or visit the NPRC website at