Join the VFW
In the presence of Almighty God, I do, of my own free will and accord, solemnly promise and declare:
I will bear true allegiance -- to the Constitution of the United States of America -- and I will always be
I do further solemnly promise and declare -- that I will comply with the Congressional Charter --
By-Laws and Ritual of this order -- and I will always be loyal thereto -- that I will never wrong of defraud
this organization -- nor a member thereof -- nor permit any wrong to be done to either -- if in my power
to prevent it.
I will never propose for membership -- any person not eligible -- nor one whom I know to be unworthy.
I will never make know to anyone -- not authorized to receive it -- any of the work of this order.
Should my affiliation -- with the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States -- cease in any way -- I
will consider this pledge -- as binding outside of the order -- as though I had remained a member of
All this I promise and pledge -- upon the honor of a true comrade -- and a citizen of our great republic.
The fundamental difference between our Organization and other veteran organizations, and one in which
we take great pride, is our eligibility qualifications. There are three requisites for membership in the
Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States: (1) Citizenship; (2) Honorable service in the Armed Forces
of the United States; (3) Service entitling the applicant to the award of a recognized campaign medal or as
set forth in the Congressional Charter and/or by-laws.
Checking Eligibility: Checking eligibility is comparatively simple. Assuming that a person is a United States
citizen and has an honorable discharge from the U.S. Armed Forces, it only remains to be proven that the
person served outside the continental limits of the U.S. and has earned a campaign or service medal
recognized by the VFW as meeting the campaign medal requisite for VFW Membership. (The only exception
is for service in Korea after June 30, 1949, until present.)
Discharges issued during and immediately after the close of World War II have a section on the back listing
the medals and decorations which have been earned. Persons discharged later received a DD-214, "Report
of Separation" form, which has a space showing medals and decorations. Lost separation documents can be
replaced by completing and submitting GSA Standard Form 180, "Request Pertaining to Military Records."
There is always a possibility of an omission on the separation documents. If an applicant claims entitlement
to a medal which is not shown on the individual's separation papers, that person may request verification
and correction of records by submitting a GSA Standard Form 180.
The GSA Standard Form 180 is available from any office of the Veterans Administration or state Veterans
Departments. The form must be completed and signed by the veteran in order to receive the information
requested or authorize the release of the information to the Veterans of Foreign Wars.