(NASHVILLE, TN), May 15, 2013 – Saturday, May 18 is U.S. Armed Forces Day and one of Tennessee’s newest license plates gives relatives of members of the U.S. Armed Forces a way to proudly display their support for the troops. The plates were issued under a law sponsored by Senator Ken Yager (R-Harriman). They are available to residents whose spouse, parent, sibling or child is serving in the armed forces of the United States.
“Today, we live in a free country because of the sacrifices of our nation’s servicemen and women, and their families,” Senator Yager said. “Many have been injured or have given their lives while fighting to defend the freedom and the liberties we cherish as Americans. I am deeply honored to have sponsored this legislation on behalf of all military families who have also played a vital role in service to this state and nation in supporting our troops here at home.”
Yager brought the bill creating the plates to the legislature in 2010 at the suggestion of a constituent, Ronda Stewart. The tag is designed after the Blue Star Banner which signifies a person who has a relative actively serving in the military.
To obtain this license plate, a registrant must:
Submit proof of current service from their service member. Examples of this documentation include copies of one of the following:
- Current Leave and Earnings Statement (LES),
- Member’s military ID card, or
- A letter from their unit commander on official letterhead stating the family member’s current status as a member of the U.S. armed forces; and
- Provide a written statement by the service member indicating the family relationship with the registrant.
Proof of eligibility must be submitted for each renewal year. The initial fee for obtaining this license plate is $25.75, and the subsequent annual fee is $21.50. Retired members of the military may apply for this license plate if they also meet the criteria above.
Blue Star Families was formed in December of 2008 by a group of military spouses to raise the awareness of the challenges of military family life with our civilian communities and leaders. BSF has grown to include spouses and families from all services and all walks of life, including National Guard and Reserve.
“The Blue Star organization is a wonderful support group for our troops,” added Yager. “I am just proud to have helped raise awareness to their cause and help to provide this sign of support for our troops.”
The bill creating the plate was sponsored by former State Representative Dennis Ferguson (D-Kingston) in the House of Representatives.