History

      Viet-Nam-Veterans-Springfield   

Wil Dailey began the Vietnam Veteran Chapter 952 and the Springfield, Missouri Veteran’s Center office assisting all Veterans issues in the Myrl Billings Memorial Veterans Center.     Wil served in the United States Air Force as a rescue para-jumper during the Vietnam War. After his discharge, Wil received two Undergraduate degrees in History and Political Science, and a Master’s degree in History from Missouri State University with an emphasis in Western American Expansion and Native American Studies.   

In the early days, Wil was often seen at Wal-Mart and various local store locations sitting in his car offering assistance to Veterans by filling out VA compensation and claims for benefits.  Within a few years, Greene County offered a free office space where Wil further assisted thousands of Veterans as well as pleading cases before the Board of Veteran Appeals.

The Vietnam War Memorial in Washington D.C. had a strong connection with Wil Dailey and the MSU Veterans Club to select the design for the Memorial.  Wil was one of the three delegates to establish the D.C. Memorial.  In 1979, Wil was instrumental with bringing the Memorial to Springfield, Missouri National Cemetery and the first Memorial to Vietnam Veterans placed on United States Government owned property in the country.

Wil was involved with the Homeless Veteran’s Task force, the Veteran’s Parade, Historical Society, VVA State Conventions, Seminars, speaking at local Colleges, as well as an occasional guest on Jerrel Cook’s National Internet Radio Broadcast to Afghanistan and Iraq troops. Wil often said, “Let’s be different; let’s stand out in the crowd by working together with the younger Gulf War and Iraqi War Era Veterans.”

In 2007, Wil set up a Veterans In Need Fund, which has been of assistance to many Veterans.  Wil passed away January 25, 2014 and left his vision and spirit of dedication to all members and friends of VVA Chapter 952 helping Veterans and their families.  We continue to follow and expand on the early visions.   Today, the Chapter is involved with civic groups and projects such as Joining Community Forces, Hope Connection, OTC Veteran Community Events, Honor Flights, United Way, Veteran Gardens, mentoring, speaking in area schools, parades, fundraisers, and more. 

We are a small active group of Vietnam Veteran’s as well as family and friends making a difference in the lives of Veterans and their families. For more information, email info@springfieldveterans.org.