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  • 21 Oct 2021 8:00 AM | Nancy Menagh (Administrator)

    CVS will rejoin the TRICARE pharmacy network as of Dec. 15, while Walmart/Sam’s Club will leave the network at the same time.

    If you fill specialty medications at Walmart or Sam’s Club, you  will receive a letter and phone call from Express Scripts to assist in moving the prescription to another network specialty pharmacy. Due to the complexity of specialty medications, beneficiaries will have a 30-day grace period to move their specialty medication. The grace period is for specialty medications only; non-specialty prescriptions must be transferred by Dec. 15.

    TriCare is hosting a seminar on November 4th

  • 17 Oct 2021 5:00 PM | Nancy Menagh (Administrator)

    1.  Question regarding arranging a headstone and/or at Arlington National Cemetery.  Please go to  There are certain criteria to be met and the process can be complex and may take time. 

    2.  Question regarding whether you qualify for SBP for an active duty death prior to 9/11.  Per Ann: Active duty deaths prior to 9/11 do not qualify for SBP.  SBP is primarily a benefit based upon retirement and a benefit paid into.  However, for post 9/11 active duty deaths, they have been granted the SBP.

    3. Question regarding amending the death certificate to reflect the current presumptives for Agent Orange, in particular relating to heart conditions.  Per Ann:  Only certain heart conditions are included in the presumptives.  You would need to have any medical doctor look at the health records and death certificate and make the amendment.  You would then appeal the previous decision.

    4. Question as to how ChampVa works as secondary to Medicare.  Per Ann: The concern is finding providers who accept ChampVa.  If the provider accepts Medicare, then they should also accept ChampVA.

    5.  I am a remarried widow that has since divorced.  My children took the SBP child option, but have now aged out.   Will I get the SBP option in 2023 and will I be contacted?  Is there somewhere I can register or check that I will be contacted? Per Ann: DFAS will contact you.    You need to make sure address is correct in MYPAY.

    6.  Should I be concerned if I do not receive the marriage questionnaire?  Per Ann:,currently the VA sends it out approximately every 7 years and stops sending it at age 55.

    7. My late husband’s first wife has indicated she is going to go after the DIC.  Can she do that?  Per Ann: No, only the surviving spouse that is married to the service member at the time of death may receive the DIC.  However, it is possible that the divorce decree may have had some kind of stipulation regarding the SBP.  There are certain rules concerning this including having to be married to the service member for at least ½ of their time on active duty.

    8.  Will ChampVA begin paying for virtual visits?  Per Ann: CHAMPVA will cover telehealth services for a covered medical benefit, but they must have both visual/audio components to be covered per CHAMPVA regulations. Audio only telehealth is not covered.

    9.  A number of people have had issues with ChampVA not paying for the shingles shot, even though they had been told before had that it would be covered.  Per Annf: if this happened to you, please pass on your name, date of service, and the shingles shot received.  CHAMPVA will look into it, but Ann expects that you will be reimbursed.

    10.  Question regarding whether a spouse who has been divorced though “no fault of her own” (some cases of PTSD, etc) and is now indigent.  Can she receive DIC?  Per Ann: The answer is sometimes this is possible.

    11.  Aid and Attendance question.  If you have remarried, but qualify and receive DIC, could you qualify for Aid and Attendance.  Per Ann: Yes, if you meet the usual criteria for Aid and Attendance.  The same question regarding educational benefits.  If you receive DIC and have not timed out for educational benefits, then yes you may still receive if remarried

    12.  Question regarding reinstatement for those who remarried after age 55, now that the law has changed.  If you remarried after age 55, would you be reinstated going forward.  A member said she was told nobody would be reinstated, it was only for those who have not yet remarried.  Per Ann:  This is correct – the date of the marriage would have to take place after January 5, 2021.

    VII.i.2.E.13.c.  Payment Date for Reinstatement of DIC 

    Do not reinstate DIC to a surviving spouse who remarried after age 55 effective earlier than January 5, 2021.  The payment date is subject to PL 116-315.

    M21-1, Part VII, Subpart i, Chapter 2, Section E - Remarriage of a Surviving Spouse.

  • 29 Sep 2021 12:27 PM | GSW National Office (Administrator)

    Last month, Las Vegas Valley Chapter member Ms. Offdenkamp and her late husband, veteran Dennis G. Jensen, was honored by Warrior Run. Please click the link to read more. 

  • 10 Sep 2021 4:02 PM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    Gold Star Wives of America (GSW) resonate a heartfelt sorrow to all the heroes who lost their lives from the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center New York City, the Pentagon, and at the Shanksville, Pennsylvania site. GSW recognized that twenty years ago today, the lives for many families were changed forever. The devastation of the series of terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, left many family members without their loved ones.

    As a result of the Global War on Terrorism, including Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, the GSW membership grew with many new surviving spouses. To adjust with these membership demographics, new chapters were created to appeal to the younger post- 9-11 surviving spouses, such as the virtual Arlington Gold Star Wives Chapter.

    Originally called “WWII Widows,” GSW was organized in 1945 in New York City. It later became federally chartered as the Gold Star Wives of America, Inc., with Eleanor Roosevelt as an original chartered member. Today there are 33 chapters located throughout the United States.

    Since 1945, GSW has been effective advocate for military surviving spouses. After 9-11 GSW became even more visible to assure military surviving spouses’ voices were heard. Congress asked GSW representatives to testify numerous times, to communicate the needs of survivors during the current conflict. Military survivor benefits are complex, which created some challenges for many of the survivors to receive their benefits as designed. The organization often contended with legislation that adversely affected families, as  survivor benefit laws had changed.   

    After 9-11, GSW successfully championed the creation of the Veteran Affairs (VA) Office of Survivors, which allowed  for direct communications with the VA. GSW also became an active participant in the VA/ Department of Defense forum. GSW collaborated with Disabled American Veterans in the win of the “Sharp Case” remarriage law, forcing DoD to comply. GSW was in the initial vanguard contributing to the correction of the “Widow’s Tax.” These were just some of many changes and improvements GSW has advocated since 9-11.

    The Gold Star Wives of America offers membership to all who meet the criteria (widows of those who died on active duty or as the result of a service-connected disability after leaving the military).For more information contact or call 888-751-6350.

    Dr. Vivianne Cisneros Wersel
    Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. Public Relations
  • 31 Aug 2021 11:29 AM | GSW National Office (Administrator)

    Veterans Disaster Response Line 24/7: 1-800-507-4571

    The VA is deploying Disaster Emergency Medical Personnel to help, and our VA Disaster Hotline is available at 1-800-507-4571 for anyone who needs help determining where to go for care. Please call that hotline and use all of the resources below to get the help you need." - VA Secretary Denis McDonough

    For all other concerns call MyVA411 24/7 at 1-800-698-2411 and press 0 to speak to an agent immediately.

  • 30 Aug 2021 4:30 PM | Membership Office (Administrator)

    The members of Gold Star Wives of America, Inc, (GSW) and many Americans are heartbroken over the recent events relating to the final withdrawal in Afghanistan. As military surviving spouses, we know how dangerous and volatile the current state is. We extend our sympathy to the families of our servicemen/women and our Afghan families who are affected by the senseless strike imposed by the militant group Isis-Khorasan.

    Since the strike occurred on the tail end of the 20-year conflict, and on the upcoming 20-year anniversary of 9-11, makes this act more inconceivable. This tragedy has surfaced many emotions.

    Our members of GSW, value the extreme sacrifice and dedication it took for those to serve after the tragic 9/11 events. Gold Star Wives of America value their service to their country and one another; they will never be forgotten.

    To those left behind, including our troops, American citizens, and the many Afghan families, Godspeed and get out safely.

  • 30 Jun 2021 3:30 PM | GSW National Office (Administrator)

    Due to Gold Star Wives of America, Incorporated's Inland Empire Chapter President Dee Dee Rodler's years of advocacy and the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation, the Riverside National Cemetery in California will receive a Gold Star Families Memorial Monument. A groundbreaking ceremony took place a few days ago. Please click here to learn more and read Ms. Rodler's interview with The Press-Enterprise.

  • 23 Jun 2021 4:51 PM | GSW National Office (Administrator)

    This Veterans' Day, the Tunnel to Towers Foundation will host a reading of all 7,059 names of service members who sacrificed their lives in the post-9/11 wars. The event will take place on the National Mall. Click here to read an article about the upcoming event. Featured in the write-up are Gold Star Spouses' statements on what this honor means to them.

  • 2 Jun 2021 11:54 AM | GSW National Office (Administrator)

    To read an article, please copy a link and paste it in your browser.

  • 19 May 2021 2:20 PM | GSW National Office (Administrator)

    Gold Star Wife and Arlington Chapter Vice President, Ursula Palmer, is the Executive Director of military and veteran programs at the Cybercrime Support Network. She was recently featured on The Spouse Angle. Please click here to read the write-up by Military Times.

Thank you to our 2023 Corporate Sponsors! See 2023 Convention Sponsors.

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For additional information, or to become a Gold Star Wives Corporate Sponsor, please visit our sponsorship page.

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc.

Gold Star Wives is a Congressionally Chartered non-profit service organization that is capable of providing services to the active duty and service-connected military surviving spouses.

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Birmingham, Alabama Office
P.O. Box 361986
Birmingham, AL 35236
Phone: 1-888-751-6350

Washington DC Office
200 N.Glebe Road Rm 435
Arlington, VA 22203-3755

Gold Star Wives of America, Inc. is a non-profit 501(C)4 National Military Widow/Widowers Service Organization chartered by the United States Congress. Donations are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes but may be deductible as trade or business expenses. Copyright © 2021.

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