How can I get my medals for those from my family?

Are you a veteran or surviving family member hoping to acquire a deserved military medal? Or recover a lost one?

The Veterans Assistance Commission of McHenry County can provide assistance.

“We help veterans and surviving family members with such requests,” said Michael A. Iwanicki, superintendent of the McHenry County VAC.

Additionally, the National Personnel Records Center website ( provides information on requests for the issuance or replacement of military service medals, decorations and awards.

“At that site, a veteran or surviving family member can make a request and even follow up on a request,” Iwanicki said.

Occasionally, a service member is discharged prior to receiving a earned medal or ribbon. Other times, a service member may have lost his or her medal and awards during a move, or a disaster such as a house fire.

“Most of the time the members of the Branch of Service are good about sending the award but sometimes a veteran can be overlooked,” Iwanicki said.

For instance, there are many Cold War veterans still seeking recognition.

“They served in what they called peacetime but the United States was actually in a Cold War. There is a certificate issued by the military to recognize those who served during the Cold War Period,” Iwanicki said.

Those who would like to make a request should keep in mind the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration fields many inquiries on a daily basis.

“And priorities are going to be made for certain types of requests,” Iwanicki said.

“Replacement medal requests are not likely a priority so it may take a long, long time to get the medals. I usually let people know that it could take over a year.”

Veterans Assistance Commission : 667 Ware Road : Woodstock, IL 60098 : 815.334.4229