Recognizing that the service flag has been a time-honored American home-front tradition since 1917, the mission of SFT (Service Flag Tradition) is to bring awareness through education about the service flag’s origin and its illustrious history spanning from World War I to present day. Our mission also focuses on telling the stories of veterans and their families supporting our motto “For every star, there’s a story”.
If you have an immediate family member serving in any branch of the Armed Forces, show your pride by displaying a Service Flag. Read DOD Instruction 1348.36 for eligibility requirements and the proper way to display your Service Flag
Gold Star Lapel Buttons (GSLB), pictured top left, are awarded by the Defense Department to surviving family members of service members who have been killed in specific conflicts (see reverse side of DD Form 3 for list of conflicts). The following relatives are entitled to receive the GSLB: Widow, Widower, Mother, Father, Stepmother/father, Mother/father through adoption, Foster mother/father in loco parentis, Son, Daughter, Stepson/daughter, Son/daughter by adoption, Brother, Sister, Half-brother/sister.
The Next of Kin Deceased Personnel Lapel Button, pictured top right, is awarded to the same relatives as listed above under the GSLB if your loved one lost their life while serving on active duty but not in the official area of the conflict as listed on DD Form 3, or while assigned in an Army Reserve or Army National Guard unit in a drill status. The next of kin may request issue of the button by writing to the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO 63138. Furnish the name, grade, SSN, and date of death of the deceased soldier. The names and relationships of the next of kin must also be provided.
For over 75 years the shoebox remained sealed until, on a cold and snowy night in 2015, the cover was removed revealing its carefully placed contents by a mother who lost two sons during WWI.