For Your Benefit
For and about Hawaii's military

See also: In The Military

Medal of Honor
recipients get stipend

Question: I recently learned that recipients of the Medal of Honor receive a sum of money each month. I have a friend who received the medal but has never received a monthly check. Where do I go to help him and is the benefit paid retroactively?

Answer: Recipients of the Medal of Honor do receive a small pension each month. The Department of Veterans Affairs administers the pension. If your friend has not been receiving his pension, have him contact the Spark Matsunaga VA Medical and Regional Office Center, benefits section, as soon as possible. Pensions are paid retroactively back to the date the medal was awarded. The veteran can either call 433-1000 for more information, or visit the VA's E-Wing located on the Diamond Head/oceanside end of Tripler Army Medical Center, first floor. Ask to speak to a benefits counselor. It would be helpful if the veteran brings a copy of any paperwork relating to the award. Currently, Congress has set the monthly pension at $600 per month, however there is legislation pending to raise the pension to $1,000 per month. You can learn more about the Medal of Honor at, and VA benefits at the Honolulu VA Web site,

Q: Are VA services authorized for women veterans who were involuntarily discharged from the military for pregnancy prior to May 1974? If not, how does one get this issue addressed?

A: The provision of health care services to veterans is established by certain eligibility criteria and discharge status requirements. To determine your eligibility for services, contact the VA at 433-0600. Women veterans involuntarily discharged may also be eligible for compensation and pension, vocational rehabilitation and employment, home loan guaranty, and burial benefits. Children born to veterans who served in Vietnam may also be eligible for monthly monetary benefits, medical care, and vocational training if they have certain birth defects linked to their mother's service. Again, contact the VA at 433-1000 for benefit information and eligibility requirements. You can also visit the VAMROC Web page at

If you have questions about your benefits as a veteran,
call Fred Ballard at the Veterans Affairs at 433-0049
or the Star-Bulletin at 529-4747.

Gregg K. Kakesako, who covers military affairs for the Star-Bulletin,
can be reached by phone at 294-4075
or by e-mail at

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