Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

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NJ Korean Service Medal


The Korean Service Medal was created by the New Jersey Legislature in 2003 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the signing of the armistice on July 27, 1953, which ended the Korean War.

The conflict, often referred to as the "Forgotten War" began on June 25, 1950 when the North Korean Army crossed the border and invaded South Korea in an unprovoked attack. Their goal was the reunification of the Korean peninsula, divided after World War II along the 38th parallel.

The United States involvement in that conflict resulted in 33,742 Americans dead and 92,134 Americans wounded.

It is fitting and proper for this State to recognize and honor its residents who served, and those who died, in that conflict.


Veterans who meet all of the following criteria.


  • New Jersey residents who were on active duty in any branch of the armed forces of the United States in Korea, Japan, or the contiguous waters or airspace thereof on or after June 23, 1950 and on or before January 31, 1955, who have been given an honorable discharge for their service and:
    • were attached to or served for one or more days with an organization participating in or directly supporting military operations
    • or were attached to or served for one or more days aboard a United States Naval vessel directly supporting military operations
    • or were attached to or served for one or more days aboard a United States Naval vessel directly supporting military operations
    • or participated as a crew member in one or more aerial flights into airspace above Korea or contiguous waters directly supporting military operations
    • or served on temporary duty for 30 consecutive days or 60 nonconsecutive days in Korea or contiguous areas, except that this time limit may be waived for persons participating in actual combat operations.
  • Korean Service Medal must appear on DD214.
  • Posthumous award authorized. 

For posthumous awards, the surviving spouse or immediate family member of any resident of the State meeting the above requirements for a medal and who was killed while on active duty or died after receiving an honorable discharge from the armed forces may apply for a posthumous awarding of the medal.

Request must include copy of the veteran’s death certificate and proof of relationship as father, mother, husband, wife, son, daughter, brother or sister. (Proof may be copies of birth, marriage, baptismal certificates which clearly show relationship, or notarized certificate.)

How To Apply

Individuals applying for the award must mail a completed Application for State Medals or a similar request in writing along with a copy of the service members WD Form 53 or DD Form 214 (Separation from Active Duty) attesting to the fact that an Honorable Discharge was granted.

Note: No person shall be entitled to more than one award of the medal.

All requests should be mailed to:

NJ Dept of Military and Veterans Affairs
Attn: DVS-VBB (Awards)
PO Box 340
Trenton, NJ 08625-0340

Last Updated: 10/04/2021
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