Veterans Day is just over two months away, and any organization who wants a simple, free way to make Veterans Day more meaningful for Vietnam Veterans can become the Vietnam War Commemoration’s “commemorative partners.”

The program is for federal, state and local communities, Veterans’ organizations and other nongovernmental organizations. They can assist a grateful nation in thanking and honoring Vietnam Veterans and their families.

More than nine million Americans served from Nov. 1, 1955, to May 15, 1975. Six million are still living, but commemorative partners can do more.

“These patriots and their families deserve the nation’s gratitude,” said Phil Waite, chief of strategic engagement for The United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration. “Our partners are the backbone of this national commemoration. We would be privileged to have your organization come alongside us in this noble mission.”

Becoming a partner

Joining the Vietnam War Commemoration as a commemorative partner is easy. Simply visit and click “Apply” in the blue Commemorative Partner Program box. There’s a simple, one-page application that requires two points of contact and one signature.

Once approved as a partner, the commemoration provides organizations with a free starter kit of materials for developing and implementing their programs. Questions regarding the commemorative partner Program application process can be submitted to:

Creating an event

Once a group becomes a partner, they receive a partner portal login. This allows the partner to create an event that is searchable on

Partners can also receive the following free materials:

  • Lapel pins for Vietnam Veterans, as well as those Veterans and family members who qualify under the Certificate of Honor program
  • Presidential proclamations
  • Program brochures
  • Fact sheets
  • “I Served” and “We Heart” bumper magnets
  • 50th anniversary and Family Member tin pins
  • Vietnam War Patch Posters (all Services)

Search for an event

People can learn about events in their local community by visiting Visitors can search for event by name, date, country, zip code and category. The site also allows visitors to search within a 1, 5, 10, 25, 50 or 100 mile radius of a zip code.

To learn more about partnering with this national commemoration program, visit their site at or any of the VWC social media sites found at

The Veterans Day poster for 2021.

The Veterans Day poster for 2021.

Veterans Day poster

People can also download a copy of the Veterans Day poster for 2021.

An author-illustrator of children’s books and advocate for military families is this year’s Veterans Day poster contest winner.

Matt Tavares, of Ogunquit, Maine, works closely with his publisher, Candlewick Press, to support an organization called United Through Reading. Their mission is to connect military families who are separated – by deployment or military assignment – through the shared experience of reading together.

His design idea for this year’s poster contest theme, the Centennial Anniversary of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, was taken from an illustration he created for a book called Twenty-One Steps.

Download the poster at

Army Veteran Joe Curtin, director of VA’s National Veterans Outreach Office, contributed to this story.

By Air Force Veteran Adam Stump is a public affairs specialist with VA's Digital Media Engagement team

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Published on Sep. 6, 2021

Estimated reading time is 2.7 min.

Views to date: 864


  1. Bill Feasenmyer Sr September 13, 2021 at 6:42 pm

    My first thoughts after reading the above was ‘ what a bunch of cry babies above” . I too served, did 18 months on 2 tours, one with Special Forces but that’s not the thing I want to focus on; it’s the treatment here back in the USA.
    I have never been dissed in all my time back. I had heard about all the ‘baby killer’ stuff when I was coming back, so as an act of defiance on my part i wore my Green Beret and stayed in uniform during a few days in California and on a commercial flight to the east coast without incident. My brother-in-law, a WW!! vet asked me why and he laughed when I told him. To this day I have never heard a disparaging comment; on the contrary I hear only thanks for your service consistently since I usually wear a SF cap and SF shirt. And this comes at Lowes, Walmart, Costco, wherever. I have been honored by my town with a banner on the boulevard with many vets from WWII Korea and VN. I have carried a wreath on Memorial Day at the Virginia War Memorial. On the 20th anniversary of 9/11 Saturday, in Walmart buying a newspaper, the man in front of me took the paper and said “let me get that” when I said that wasn’t necessary he pointed to my cap and said ‘neither was that, but you did it anyway’. and that choked me up!

    This is not to disparage any of you vets that have hard times but just to let you know that some of us were and are still respected.

  2. Tom Butler-Martinez September 9, 2021 at 9:50 am

    I too am a Vietnam Era Vet and when I returned to the States I spent the next 30+ years fighting for service connected disability benefits. The majority of the Viet Vets that I spoke with during my lung cancer hospitalization said that they had been fighting for their disability more than 20 years after. Despicable. Other vets come home with 100% disability over PTSD. Vietnam Vets have fought for their service connected disabilities for too many years. Dishonored by the American populous and dishonored by our politicians . I spent 5 years with an attorney fighting for benefits as a result of blue water Navy, even after the government acknowledged the exposure, I was requested to produce a cargo manifest to prove I was exposed and to contact others that served with me for proof. Why????

  3. William V Braniff September 9, 2021 at 7:33 am

    Vietnam Veterans, like in the past will end up as usual, honoring their service themselves, with a few hangers on possibly.

  4. Tom September 9, 2021 at 12:12 am

    Exactly What Extensive, “More than their Fair Share of Freebies and Recognition” are you talking about Melinda, that Viet Nam Vets have enjoyed and been adorned with? I am one of those guys, & I can’t remember any such hoopla, or freebies other than some less than enjoyable Welcoming home turnouts at the airports by the Anti War demonstrators, being called names by the same idiots that enjoyed the freedoms that we were sent to defend, & for the others in foreign places that couldn’t defend themselves. Do you mean the Less than adequate Educational and Disability Benefits for the Vets that gave up that important 1-4 yrs of their lives right out of high school, or more if they lost their lives or were wounded and suffered from disabilities either immediate or that came later in their lives. As stated by the Marine Gulf War Vet, “ Viet Nam Vets will never receive more than they deserve” and challenged by Melinda that thinks maybe Tge Viet Nam Vet ghastly received too many freebies and recognition for their contribution & sacrifices. Let me say this, I don’t think “ANY” Combat Vet that was lucky enough, or Not, to have survived their ordeal can ever be be made whole, by any Benefits or Accolades that are bestowed by our current VA guidelines & procedures. Disability Claims are still being categorically denied, and claim procedures continue to require more and more form variations to be completed only so they can be rejected and require yet more clarifications by the reviewing and approval personnel that don’t have a clue of what they are doing, only that they have a black & white procedure to follow, and if it doesn’t meet every criteria, then just reject it, and see if the Vet has the tenacity to challenge the system, & continue to seek their benefits, whether it be disability, medical, educational, or whatever that Vet may be entitled to.

  5. Floyd E. Rasmussen September 8, 2021 at 11:14 pm

    Very few heroes ever receive recognition.

  6. Floyd E. Rasmussen September 8, 2021 at 10:38 pm

    Is there anyone recognizing those of us who served quietly in the various intelligence services during the Vietnam era, and the Cold War ?. I served during the Vietnam era, but was never allowed there, nor any combat zone. I was a “Nuclear Secrets” carrier and had to carefully guard myself. Many of my unit’s activities are still secret, and date back to 1947, when
    the US Air Force was established. While at my first permanent assignment. i was given what i was told was
    The Presidential Unit Citation. I received my first oak leaf cluster a bit later. Sometime later i received my second oak leaf cluster. These Presidential Unit Citations were awarded under the Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Johnson administrations for our work in establishing and monitoring the various Nuclear Test Ban treaties. Lately i applied for a copy of my service medals and was indicated as having shared only an outstanding unit award. I guess i shouldn’t be too disappointed since my unit was finally declassified in 1997. So many of my records were apparently
    not available. I’m sure this type of thing has been experienced by many vets.I hear the story often from many VETS
    still trying to receive disability awards. I wish them all well.

  7. Teri Welch September 8, 2021 at 9:22 pm

    Melinda, my husband is Vietnam Navy Veteran who is also sick from chemical exposure during his service and not able to work, is in a wheelchair and needs my help to live on his own. He went from working full time to barely able to hold himself up in a wheelchair in 30 days. I lose 80-100 hours yearly taking him to doctor appointments. We’re not receiving any freebies or looking for any. The loan I had to take out to pay his medical bills, equipment, home modification work done by me and 6 months I was out of work to take care of him will be paid off in 6 years when I’m almost 70. I work full time with no plans to stop. I’m not looking for sympathy. These are the facts.

    Positive recognition of Vietnam Vets didn’t come until 50 years later. I know of Vietnam Veterans who were told by other veterans that they didn’t serve during a real war, were spat on when they came home and insulted in many other ways. Vietnam Veterans weren’t welcomed home. We kept quiet about his military service to avoid this kind of abuse. No one knew until 5 years ago of his military service. I got sick and tired of people’s comments about how he didn’t take of himself and told them. People were shocked.A

    All veterans deserve respect. It takes a special person to serve. I couldn’t do it. I’m thankful for those that did every day.

    A Vietnam Vet’s wife

    • Dave September 9, 2021 at 10:47 am

      I also was not feet on the ground in Vietnam but while traveling in uniform had to be very careful and not be public while in uniform. I am very affected by the way Vietnam veterans were treated for so many years. It is hard to hear the praise now and accept it with grace. I hope that it is not repeated again with Afghanistan veterans. Think how the Washington police are being treated after Jan. 6.

  8. dennis September 8, 2021 at 9:13 pm

    All vets matter!

    All wars, no matter how long, or where we fight, wars are devastating to someone. We all have lost our brothers in combat…

    Maybe! an “All Vets” national commemoration program is in order , eh?

    like the poster “HONORING ALL WHO SERVED” maybe change served to SERVE.

    Just keep their meaning alive – “Land of the free and the Home of the brave”

  9. Thomas “Toby” Weir September 8, 2021 at 8:53 pm

    This Army and Air Force Vietnam Veteran was moved by the kind words of the Gulf War Marine! I found the September 7th Post by Melinda disrespectful to this Vietnam Veteran! I know she is entitled to her opinion! Thanks.

  10. Dave September 8, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    Melinda, honestly there was NEVER A GROUP OF VETERANS so dishonored by their own country as those that served during the Vietnam war. Most of the time it didn’t matter if you were a combat vet or returning from some other duty station you still got spit on and called baby killer and had things thrown at you. If you went out off base you better go with a bunch of guys especially you were in uniform. This is how we were treated by our own people and yes there were other wars but NOT ONE OF THEM WAS TREATED LIKE WE WERE WHEN WE CAME HOME! One of the nicest things I have ever had happen since I was in was a few weeks ago a fellow vet saw my hat at a restaurant as I walked by and stood up and shook my hand and said welcome home brother welcome home. That meant more to me than any parade or freebie or recognition and I think that’s all any of us wanted was to be welcomed home and never got it, think about that next time you see an old broken vet just welcome him home.

  11. Charles September 8, 2021 at 7:12 pm

    Personally I am disgusted at the above comments. This person must be born after 1970 and never got History in school. As a Marine Veteran of the Vietnam war, it was Our American Citizens which turned their backs on all my fellow Veterans when we came home. Except for the yippies who decided to become Senators and call the rest of us baby killers most of us returned home, started new life, a Family, and just tried to move away from where we had been. It is and always will be the American Citizens who seem to want to brand us for doing what Our Country sent us to do. Then they wanted us out of there. Sound familiar? Look what just happened. Now the same folks just created a whole new Family if Veterans who are made to feel insignificant. It is a small wonder Veterans are coming home with bigtime stress levels when they have to mingle with mindless individuals who have no clue what they are speaking about. GOD BLESS every person who ever wore a uniform and lets hope this never comes to our shores. Maybe then, will YOU get it….

  12. Rev.Joe Monardo September 8, 2021 at 7:00 pm

    Please, let’s recognise ALL Veterans from all Wars ,Confflicts ,Everyday Service.Because their always at the ready .And give their ALL. From Veitnam Veteran .May GOD BLESS AMERICA,And all those who Served and those Serving Everywhere.

  13. Rick. Burns September 8, 2021 at 6:34 pm

    Yes. I have had my fair share. 79% PTSD. Coronary artery disease. Agent Orange
    We never got anything for nothing.
    What don u have to say about. The 58000 that never came home

  14. Paul F. Eckman September 8, 2021 at 2:57 pm

    OH BOY

  15. Gulf War Marine September 8, 2021 at 10:19 am

    Melinda, Your point is noted about other era veterans but Vietnam Vets will never have more than they deserve.
    Semper Fi
    -A Gulf War vet

    • W. Shayer September 8, 2021 at 6:29 pm

      Thanks Gulf Marine

      We who served in Nam were probably one of the few Groups of vets who received little or no recognition when we returned. Some of us suffered accusations and physical abuse.

      I, by no means, mean any lack of respect for the sacrifices made by those who cam both before and after us.

      My Dad, father in law, and 3 uncles (WW2 ) and youngest Uncle ( Korea ) received very little recognition / ” freebies ” during my life. ( cant vouch for before 1950 lol )

      All vets , All vets earned their way !

      Proud USAF

  16. Melinda September 7, 2021 at 7:31 pm

    Seriously? There ARE other war veterans out here you know. Nam vets have had MORE THAN THEIR FAIR SHARE of freebies and recognition, it’s time for other veterans to have theirs. Let’s start with the very, very few remaining World War II vets and the Korean War vets that you people NEVER talk about or acknowledge. The move on to the real Gulf War vets, and I mean pre-Iraq and Afghanistan!!!

    • Sandra Lee Smith September 8, 2021 at 11:50 pm

      Melinda, for decades, the WW II vets dominated at the VA, & in service orgs. Korean vets, not so much, but we Vietnam era vets were kind of the “freckle faced stepkids” everyone spat on & despised, especially those who were “in country”. It has only been the past decade we’ve been recognized at all, that nearly 50 yrs after that war ended. My parents were WW II vets; my sister & I are Vietnam era vets. For many, if not most of us, it was bittersweet to see the 1st Gulf War vets treated as the WW II vets had been; as the heroes they were. We are now the vets dying off in droves every day as we’re “aging out”. Many of my schoolmates are names on a wall, men who were drafted, who had other hopes & dreams they never got to live, men I grew up with… can you even imagine that?

      • John R. September 9, 2021 at 11:46 am

        Thank you for putting it so nicely.
        I don’t know why I looked at this site, I normally ignore anything concerning the military.
        USMC 66 – 69

    • Paul September 9, 2021 at 1:27 pm


      You are obviously unqualified to make an informed, intelligent comment.
      In the future, please refrain from expressing your worthless opinion.

      100% Permanent and Total disabled rated
      Viet Nam Vet

Comments are closed.

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