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Tulsa County clerk offering military discharge document recording at VFW post on Veterans Day

A DD-214 is the military certificate of discharge from active duty.

The Tulsa County Clerk’s Office will offer free recording of military discharge papers to veterans and their family members Thursday on location at Tulsa VFW Post 577.

It’s the first time the service has been offered outside of the office at county headquarters downtown.

DD-214 forms will be scanned and kept securely in an electronic format, and the clerk’s office can provide certified copies on demand if someone’s hard copy is lost. Getting copies from the federal government typically takes at least six to eight weeks.

"One of the most heartbreaking things I've had to deal with here as county clerk is seeing people come in who request a copy of their dad's DD-214, or their husband's or their wife's discharge papers, and when we don't have them, they know that it takes weeks and weeks to be able to get a copy of that," said Tulsa County Clerk Michael Willis. "And they've just lost their loved one, they've got to go ahead and have a funeral and that veteran deserves to have the honors that would come along with a military funeral, but they can't get it because they don't have a copy of that DD-214."

The recording event on Thursday is from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 1109 E Sixth Street.

Willis said he plans to grow the mobile service in 2022, offering more events for veterans and expanding to other locations, too.

"So, we might go to, like, an assisted living center and let folks file deeds or other documents that they might not otherwise be able to make the trek into downtown or hire an attorney to come file their documents for them," Willis said.

The Tulsa County Clerk's Office regular hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 218 W Sixth St. Military discharge papers recording as well as certified copies are always free.

Matt Trotter joined KWGS as a reporter in 2013. Before coming to Public Radio Tulsa, he was the investigative producer at KJRH. His freelance work has appeared in the Los Angeles Times and on MSNBC and CNN.