- Example Display Recognition
- Applicable Military Branches
- Display Types
- Issue Requirements
- Issue Regulations
- Who May Apply
- Administration Processing and Delivery
- How To Apply For This Display Recognition and/or Medal
- How To Obtain a Free Black&White Display Recognition
- Mailing Address
- Other Display Recognitions
- Military Resource Guides
Example Display Recognition:
Actual Size: 8 1/2 x 11
Displayed: Air Force.
All Five (Wartime) Service Branches, Army, Coast Guard,
Marine and Navy are Applicable.
All Military Service branches are applicable:
Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Navy
Who May Apply
You have four display types to choose from:
Black & White (No Color)
Heavy Bond Enclosure
||Heavy Bond Enclosure|
Colors: Regal, Black, Navy
Trimmed in Appearance Gold
Ready for Mantle or Shelf Display
If the veteran's name is not listed as a wartime casualty in the American War Library Personnel Database you must submit the following:
- An unaltered photocopy of the veteran's casualty report, or death certificate.
- Contact The War Library if you have other documentation different than the above: 1-562-422-4100 or Gold Star Lapel Pin Display Recognition Inquiry.
This Display Recognition is available ONLY to authorized recipients who possess orders, or authorization form, or release documentation that confirms award eligibility. (See "Issue Requirements"). To obtain either a Display Medal or a Display Recognition for your authorized award you will be required to provide military-issued documentation authorizing your award. There are no exceptions.
You must NOT submit a military issued document or photocopy that:
- has been altered in any way by you after
the original's official issue
- contains information or corrections or
additions that you entered
- lists awards or training you knowingly did not receive
- contains highlighting, colorizing or other markings you entered
Be advised that on request any knowingly fraudulent document sent by you will be released to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that may result in prosecution and/or fine/imprisonment.
Email Questions, or Phone / Fax: 1-562-422-4100
Processing and Delivery
||Total||Full Color .PDF (Printable)
||Published Document only (Full Color)
||Published Document in Heavy Bond Enclosure (Full Color)
||Full Color Printable Certificates
on CD-Rom (minimum 20 Certificates)
- *** USPS Shipping fee based on 1-3 Certificates shipped to any U.S. state, FPO or APO
- ** USPS Shipping fee based on 1-10 Certificates shipped to any U.S. state, FPO or APO
- Contact The War Library for international shipping cost
How to Apply
You may apply for your Display Recognition using a...
- Check Debit card (* Shipped within 1 week)
- Charge card (* Shipped within 1 week)
- Personal, Business, Bank or Cashiers Check ( Shipped in 6 weeks)
- Money Order (* Shipped within 1 week)
(* Upon reception of required documentation)
Complete and MAIL this APPLICATION FORM.
DISPLAY RECOGNITION and/or MEDAL APPLICATION FORM
Don't forget to include an unaltered COPY of your DD-214, WD AGO 53-55 or other pre-arranged document(s).
Records Chief (REC-AMW)
The American War Library
817 East Via Carmelitos Ste 319
Long Beach CA 90805-7549
Click here for answers to common questionsEmail: Gold Star Lapel Pin Display Recognition Inquiry
Copyright © The American War Library
Military and Veteran Websites
The G.I. Photograph Museum of Honor
Locator Registry Applications
Accessing The Worldwide Military Personnel Database
Gold Star Lapel Pin
The lapel pin was established by Congress in 1965 (Public Law 534 - 89th Congress) to identify widows, parents and next of kin of service members killed in combat. While enacted during the Vietnam War, the award authority is retroactive to World War I, and includes most subsequent conflicts.
Click for larger image
Gold Star Lapel Button
- 1. During World War I, April 6, 1917 to March 3, 1921;
- 2. During World War II, September 8, 1939 to July 25, 1947;
- 3. During any subsequent period of armed hostilities in which the United States was engaged before July 1, 1958 (United Nations action in Korea, June 27, 1950 to July 27, 1954);
- 4. After June 30, 1958
Operations subsequent to June 30, 1958 which are recognized by the Department of Defense in establishing eligibility for the Gold Star Lapel Button include:
- while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
- while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force;
- while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict in which the United States is not a belligerent party against an opposing armed force.
- Lebanon, July 1, 1958 to November 1, 1958
- Republic of Vietnam, July 1, 1958 to March 28, 1973
- Quemoy and Matsu Islands, August 23, 1958 to June 1, 1963
- Taiwan Straits, August 23, 1958 to January 1, 1959
- U.S. operations in direct support of the United Nations in the Congo, July 14, 1960 to September 1, 1962
- U.S. operations of assistance to the Republic of Laos, April 19, 1961 to October 7, 1962
- Berlin, August 14, 1961 to June 1, 1963
- Cuba, October 24, 1962 to June 1, 1963
- Congo, November 23, 1964 to November 27, 1964
- Dominican Republic, April 28, 1965 to September 21, 1966
- Korea, October 1, 1966 to June 30, 1974
- Cambodia, March 29, 1973 to August 15, 1973
- Thailand, March 29, 1973 to August 15, 1973
- Cambodia, April 11, 1975 to April 13, 1975
- Vietnam, April 29, 1975 to April 30, 1975
- Mayaguez Operation, May 15, 1975
- Lebanon, June 1983 to
- Grenadan Operation, October 23, 1983 to November 21, 1983
- Operation Eldorado Canyon, April 2, 1986 to April 17, 1986
- Panama, December 20, 1989 to January 31, 1990
- Desert Shield/Desert Storm, August 2, 1990 to November 30, 1995
- Haiti, September 16, 1994 to March 31, 1995
- Somalia, December 5, 1992 to March 31, 1995
- Operations in the Persian Gulf, November 30, 1995 to (to be determined)
- Operations in and around the Former Republic of Yugoslavia, December 20, 1996 to June 20, 1998
Under the recent change in policy, the pin is authorized for wear on the dress (Class A) uniforms of military personnel who have lost a spouse, mother, father, child or step-child to combat. (An interim change to Army Regulation 670-1 (Wear and Appearance of Army Uniforms), requires enlisted soldiers to wear the pin centered vertically and horizontally on the left lapel of the green uniform. Officers should wear the pin centered on the left lapel one-quarter of an inch below their branch insignia.)
How to Obtain a FREE B&W Display Recognition
A FREE Black&White (non-color) Display Recognition is available to immediate family members of American [* and non-American] military personnel killed (or deceased) in combat theaters. Immediate Family Members include Parents, Spouse, Siblings and Children. All other family members (nieces, nephews, grandchildren, etc.) are not included in the free Display Recognition Program as per the Department of Defense regulation defining "Immediate Family members".
[*] "Immediate family members" of non-American, Allied military personnel are also eligible.
IMMEDIATE FAMILY MEMBERS: Please EMAIL your request to The War Library, followed by fax or mail the following document(s):
1. Photocopy of military document(s) certifying or establishing veteran's combat theater death. (If the veteran is already listed in The American War Library database, please EMAIL the full copy of the veteran's War Library listing text [cut-and-paste the veteran's War Library listing data] and database record number).
2. Photocopy of your official documentation displaying your status as an Immediate Family Member (birth certificate, marriage certificate, (military) dependent declaration, etc.)
Your B&W certificate will be emailed to you within 48 hours... in most cases, sooner.