Military Discounts: 4th of July 2020

A list of 2020 4th of July free meals, freebies, discounts and deals for active duty military, veterans and retirees.

Independence Day will be celebrated on Saturday, July 4, 2020.

Note: For theme parks and brick and mortar locations reporting discounts be sure to check for closures and changes due to these ever-changing times.

2020 Fourth of July Offers

2020 offers will be added as the date nears and offers are announced.

Academy Sports + Outdoors
From June 21 through September 11, all military members, first responders and healthcare professionals will receive 10% off online and in-store purchases with valid ID.

Free Admission – Many local places are providing free admission to active duty military and veterans this 4th of July.  Call ahead to confirm, but parks, zoos, aquariums, amusement parks, museums, concerts, events and many more are providing free admission and discounts to family members on Independence Day.

Home Depot 10% Off
A 10% discount is offered to all military veterans, on purchases up to a maximum of $500. A year-round 10% discount is available at all U.S. locations to active duty personnel, reservists, retired or disabled veterans and their immediate families. Must present a valid military ID. Unfortunately, Home Depot does not accept state ID cards with veterans designation (some locations may).  Note: Home Depot has unfortunately removed the military discount policy from their website while keeping the discount intact.

Rack Room Shoes
Rack Room Shoes offers a 10% military discount to all members of the military past and present. The military discount is valid in-store with proof of service. The Rack Room Military Discount is available on Independence Day, Veterans Day, Memorial Day, and every Tuesday.

Walgreens is offering 30% off all regular priced items in-store to all veterans, active duty military, and family members from July 3 – 5, 2020 with their Balance Rewards Card.

2020 Limited Time Military, First Responder & Medical Professional Discounts

Shop these brands offering special discounts for military, medical professional or first responders on the front lines.

Verified military members, medical professionals, first responders, nurses get 40% off.

Military, first responders and medical professionals get a 60% discount on all full-priced products in their online store.

Big Lots
15% off discount to healthcare, first responders, military and veterans for a limited time.

50% off all products for Military Service Members, Healthcare Workers, and First Responders.

Clarks Shoes
Clarks offers a 50% off purchases for Active Duty, Retirees, Veterans, Military Spouses, Military Family Members, as well as a First Responder discount for active Police, Fire, and EMT customers and also Teachers.

Home Chef
50% off your first purchase for medical personnel, first responders, military and teachers.

20 percent off all food takeout orders every day until further notice to all military personnel, local healthcare workers and first responders.

Active, veteran, retired, and reservist US Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Space Forceand Coast Guard personnel are eligible to receive a 20% Nike military discount on and at Nike, Converse, and Hurley stores in the United States (excluding Nike Company/Employee Stores). For a limited time, increased from from 10% to 20%!

Outback Steakhouse
10% off heroes discount is open to military personnel and their immediate family members plus nurses, doctors, medical staff, servicemen and women, police officers and firefighters, with corresponding medical, state or federal service ID.

Military Personnel, Teachers, Nurses, First Responders, and Government employees get a 50% discount.

Tuft & Needle
15% discount to active military, veterans, first responders and healthcare professionals.


Military Benefits: Death Gratuity

The death gratuity program provides for a special tax free payment of $100,000 to eligible survivors of members of the Armed Forces, who die while on active duty or while serving in certain reserve statuses. The death gratuity is the same regardless of the cause of death.

The longstanding purpose of the death gratuity has been to provide immediate cash payment to assist survivors of deceased members of the Armed forces to meet their financial needs during the period immediately following a member’s death and before other survivor benefits, if any, become available.

The death gratuity is payable for death of members in a reserve status while performing authorized travel to or from active duty, while on inactive-duty training, or while performing authorized travel directly to or from active duty for training or inactive duty training, as well as, members of reserve officers’ training programs who die while performing annual training duty under orders for a period of more than 13 days or while performing authorized travel to or from that duty, to applicants for membership in reserve officers’ training corps who die while attending travelling to or from field training or a practice cruise and to persons travelling to from or while at a place of acceptance for entry upon active duty.

The death gratuity is also payable if an eligible member or former member dies within 120 days of release or discharge from active duty, or active duty for training when the Secretary of Veterans Affairs determines that the death resulted from injury or disease incurred or aggravated during such duty.

Eligible Survivor

Prior to May 25, 2007, the death gratuity was payable according to a specific hierarchy prescribed in law with limited opportunity for the member to designate a beneficiary.

Since July 1, 2008, a member may designate any person or persons to receive up to 100% of the death gratuity (in 10% increments) with any remaining undesignated amount payable according to a new prescribed hierarchy. The new beneficiary hierarchy for the amount of the death gratuity not covered by a designation shall be paid as follows:

  1. If there is none of the above, to other next of kin of the person entitled under the laws of domicile of the person at the time of the person’s death.
  2. To the surviving spouse of the person, if any.
  3. If there is no surviving spouse, to any surviving children (as prescribed in the note for item 2 of the pre-2008 hierarchy, above) of the person and the descendants of any deceased children by representation.
  4. If there is none of the above, to the surviving parents of the person or the survivor of them.
  5. If there is none of the above, to the duly appointed executor or administrator of the estate of the person.


Item (1), Surviving Spouse. If a person has a spouse, but designates a person other than the spouse to receive all or or a portion of the amount payable, the Secretary of the Military Department shall provide notice of the designation to the spouse.

Item (3), Treatment of Parents. Parents include fathers and mothers through adoption. However, only one father and one mother may be recognized in any case, and preference shall be given to those who exercised a parental relationship on the date, or most nearly before the date, on which the decedent entered military service.

If a person entitled to all or a portion of a death gratuity dies before the person recieves the death gratuity, it shall be paid to the living survivor next in the order prescribed.

Designation of Eligible Survivors

Members may designate eligible survivors, at any time, by updating their DD Form 93, Record of Emergency Data.

Free Military Mental Health Help: 3 Myths Answered

It’s not that I actually need this appointment, I tell myself. It’s just a good thing to do — like getting a health screening or my annual flu shot.

And so I begrudgingly go each month, whether I feel like it or not. Sometimes, I take my kids with me, and they sit quietly with headphones and watch a movie. Sometimes, I duck out of work for 90 minutes to make it happen. Sometimes, I can think of one million other things I’d rather be doing.

But when I’m done, I’m always glad I went.

The monthly appointment is with my non-medical counselor, a woman named Judy who has an office attached to her home. And thanks to Military OneSource and Tricare, it’s free.

Yup, completely free.

Sitting in the back of a crowded room at a recent USO military spouse event listening to Rachel Hollis, author of The New York Times best-seller Girl Wash Your Face, I was shocked at how few spouses raised their hands when she asked who was currently in non-medical therapy. It could not have been more than 11 people.

And when she asked why people weren’t in therapy, a practice she considers preventative health help not emergency care, there was a parade of reasons based on “facts.”

None of those facts was completely accurate. I’m going to debunk them now.

3 Myths About Free Military Mental Health Help

Myth: There are no counselors available through Military OneSource or Tricare

Fact: It’s basically raining therapists.

I won’t argue that some areas have a higher demand and lower supply than others. I haven’t lived in each region — I can’t swear on a stack of Bibles that in-person therapy is easily available everywhere. But I can tell you that if, God forbid, there really are no in-person therapists available in Military OneSource’s network, you have other options. For example, therapists are available by video session or phone. Is that as nice as talking to someone in person? No. But it sure is convenient.

Myth: I can’t get therapy because I don’t have child care

Fact: Your kids shouldn’t prohibit you from getting care. Therapists understand that people have children. And while, no, taking your kids to your therapist appointment isn’t ideal, there are ways to make this work if you’re motivated to do so. For example, you can bring your kid with you, score a pair of headphones to put on her and distract her with a movie during your appointment. Swap child care with a friend. Utilize the child development center’s hourly care.

I can tell you that these methods of finding kid care for your therapy appointments work because I’ve done them. Therapists want you to be there, and they will help you come up with solutions for this barrier and many others, I promise.

Myth: “I have to get a referral.”

Fact: Military family members do not need a referral to get most types of mental health help.

The military provides mental health care to all dependents through two main avenues: Military OneSource and Tricare.

Through Military OneSource, all Defense Department beneficiaries, including National Guard and Reserve, can access up to 12 sessions of free non-medical counseling per issue or life problem by calling 800-342-9647 and going through a screening. If you have a new problem and need additional counseling, you can call again and get 12 more sessions.

For example, if deployment has made you seek counseling, you can get another 12 sessions as you deal with homecoming. Or maybe you’re navigating a sticky situation with your mother-in-law. Call and request sessions to help with that issue. No one will babysit your sessions to make sure that’s what you’re actually talking about with your counselor. Rather, it’s how Military OneSource tracks who is using the counseling services.

And if you use up your 12 free sessions and want to continue or don’t want to deal with Military OneSource to start with? Military dependents can self-refer through Tricare. In fact, it’s one of the few things covered by Tricare for which all plans can self-refer.

How much it costs to continue will depend on your plan and whether your therapist is in the Tricare network.

The only two categories of mental health help that require a Tricare referral are psychoanalysis and outpatient therapy for substance use disorder through a substance use disorder rehabilitation facility, according to Tricare.