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States with the most veterans

  • States With the Most Veterans
    1/ PEPPERSMINT // Shutterstock

    States With the Most Veterans

    Every day thousands of brave men and women put their lives on the line to defend our country. In an incredible sacrifice, the members of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard have chosen to serve our nation in one of the most selfless ways possible.

    But for many of America’s soldiers service doesn’t end upon returning home - America’s veterans continue to make a huge impact every day from acting as everyday heroes on the street to using their wings to bring rescue dogs to new owners. Indeed there are over 20M U.S. Veterans in America today with incredible volunteering opportunities all around us in a chance to interact with real-life heroes.

    But where do our veterans decide to settle upon returning home?

    Stacker examined U.S. Census data released in 2017 to determine which states (plus D.C. and Puerto Rico) have the highest rates of veterans as a percentage of the adult civilian population. The Census defines veterans as those who have formerly had active duty service across the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard (in addition to U.S. Merchant Marine during World War II).

    For each location, we provide estimated populations for veterans ranging from recent tours of duty today to as far back as World War II- offering a glimpse into the legacy of service that resides within each state, Puerto Rico, and D.C. 

    So how many veterans live in your state? Read on to see the U.S. states with the most vets.

     

  • #52. Puerto Rico
    2/ Official White House Photo by Amanda Lucidon

    #52. Puerto Rico

    Total veterans: 79,492 (2.93% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 1,986
    - Korean War: 14,716
    - Vietnam War: 26,175
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 11,457
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 10,616

  • #51. New York
    3/ U.S. Army // Wikimedia

    #51. New York

    Total veterans: 723,582 (4.66% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 47,002
    - Korean War: 82,411
    - Vietnam War: 244,147
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 104,286
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 102,092

  • #50. District of Columbia
    4/ Mariordo (Mario Roverto Durán Ortiz) // Wikicommons

    #50. District of Columbia

    Total veterans: 26,346 (4.73% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 561
    - Korean War: 2,059
    - Vietnam War: 7,666
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 6,549
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 6,111

  • #49. New Jersey
    5/ Tomwsulcer // Wikimedia

    #49. New Jersey

    Total veterans: 330,766 (4.76% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 22,662
    - Korean War: 41,225
    - Vietnam War: 122,104
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 42,904
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 39,169

  • #48. California
    6/ Flickr

    #48. California

    Total veterans: 1,624,519 (5.41% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 77,567
    - Korean War: 160,972
    - Vietnam War: 579,166
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 277,896
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 306,600

  • #47. Massachusetts
    7/ Danielle Lee Brown // Shutterstock

    #47. Massachusetts

    Total veterans: 311,150 (5.73% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 20,232
    - Korean War: 35,260
    - Vietnam War: 111,101
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 40,588
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 43,477

  • #46. Utah
    8/ Ken Lund // Flickr

    #46. Utah

    Total veterans: 122,654 (5.77% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 5,676
    - Korean War: 11,890
    - Vietnam War: 44,597
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 24,901
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 25,766

  • #45. Illinois
    9/ Jim Bowen // Wikimedia

    #45. Illinois

    Total veterans: 583,994 (5.92% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 27,457
    - Korean War: 59,108
    - Vietnam War: 215,152
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 100,080
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 81,232

  • #44. Connecticut
    10/ Stephanie Dreyer // DOD Photo, defense.gov

    #44. Connecticut

    Total veterans: 170,879 (6.07% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 11,602
    - Korean War: 18,919
    - Vietnam War: 62,784
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 23,564
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 22,560

  • #43. Rhode Island
    11/ Chief Petty Officer James Foehl // wikimedia

    #43. Rhode Island

    Total veterans: 55,465 (6.57% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 3,063
    - Korean War: 7,198
    - Vietnam War: 20,982
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 8,360
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 7,325

  • #42. Louisiana
    12/ Judy M Darby // Shutterstock

    #42. Louisiana

    Total veterans: 241,202 (6.80% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 8,439
    - Korean War: 20,142
    - Vietnam War: 85,295
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 52,591
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 44,700

  • #41. Texas
    13/ Christian M. Mericle // Wikimedia

    #41. Texas

    Total veterans: 1,460,627 (7.13% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 42,735
    - Korean War: 98,842
    - Vietnam War: 501,215
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 361,740
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 358,210

  • #40. Michigan
    14/ Dwight Burdette // wikimedia

    #40. Michigan

    Total veterans: 559,155 (7.23% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 26,091
    - Korean War: 53,519
    - Vietnam War: 215,748
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 80,838
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 67,419

  • #39. Minnesota
    15/ Bjoertvedt // wikimedia

    #39. Minnesota

    Total veterans: 310,786 (7.35% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 15,160
    - Korean War: 34,231
    - Vietnam War: 117,485
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 44,461
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 41,865

  • #38. Vermont
    16/ Niyazz // Shutterstock

    #38. Vermont

    Total veterans: 37,412 (7.40% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 2,672
    - Korean War: 3,558
    - Vietnam War: 15,259
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 5,794
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 4,679

  • #37. Wisconsin
    17/ Daderot // wikimedia

    #37. Wisconsin

    Total veterans: 336,559 (7.49% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 16,011
    - Korean War: 32,204
    - Vietnam War: 124,951
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 51,256
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 46,611

  • #36. Indiana
    18/ Huw Williams // Wikimedia

    #36. Indiana

    Total veterans: 381,073 (7.54% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 16,211
    - Korean War: 33,991
    - Vietnam War: 135,322
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 64,324
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 48,855

  • #35. Iowa
    19/ RifeIdeas // Wikimedia

    #35. Iowa

    Total veterans: 183,822 (7.64% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 8,313
    - Korean War: 18,750
    - Vietnam War: 70,364
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 28,827
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 26,265

  • #34. Pennsylvania
    20/ MPHaas // Wikimedia

    #34. Pennsylvania

    Total veterans: 791,295 (7.83% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 44,217
    - Korean War: 84,881
    - Vietnam War: 290,384
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 118,539
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 101,077

  • #33. Mississippi
    21/ U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Aramis X. Ramirez // Wikimedia

    #33. Mississippi

    Total veterans: 176,719 (7.84% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 5,410
    - Korean War: 13,279
    - Vietnam War: 62,121
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 42,170
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 35,405

  • #32. Maryland
    22/ Tim Evanson // Wikimedia

    #32. Maryland

    Total veterans: 370,459 (7.98% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 12,272
    - Korean War: 25,555
    - Vietnam War: 114,677
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 93,697
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 90,266

  • #31. Kentucky
    23/ Bedford at English Wikipedia // Wikimedia

    #31. Kentucky

    Total veterans: 272,899 (8.00% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 9,710
    - Korean War: 22,258
    - Vietnam War: 104,894
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 57,676
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 43,802

  • #30. Kansas
    24/ Palbert01 // wikimedia

    #30. Kansas

    Total veterans: 175,372 (8.05% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 7,716
    - Korean War: 16,059
    - Vietnam War: 64,245
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 33,611
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 35,641

  • #29. Ohio
    25/ Denise Kappa // Shutterstock

    #29. Ohio

    Total veterans: 729,520 (8.11% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 33,121
    - Korean War: 63,800
    - Vietnam War: 268,351
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 127,262
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 99,558

  • #28. North Dakota
    26/ U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Master Sgt. David H. Lipp // wikimedia

    #28. North Dakota

    Total veterans: 46,905 (8.13% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 1,859
    - Korean War: 4,305
    - Vietnam War: 15,412
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 10,403
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 10,453

  • #27. Georgia
    27/ Michael Rivera // wikimedia

    #27. Georgia

    Total veterans: 643,660 (8.30% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 15,042
    - Korean War: 38,917
    - Vietnam War: 211,815
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 184,791
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 140,928

  • #26. Tennessee
    28/ Niyazz // Shutterstock

    #26. Tennessee

    Total veterans: 427,976 (8.35% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 11,509
    - Korean War: 32,570
    - Vietnam War: 159,300
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 87,948
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 77,991

  • #25. Nebraska
    29/ Josh Plueger // U.S. Air Force Photo

    #25. Nebraska

    Total veterans: 120,533 (8.44% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 5,565
    - Korean War: 12,106
    - Vietnam War: 42,666
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 24,898
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 22,187

  • #24. Delaware
    30/ Niyazz // Shutterstock

    #24. Delaware

    Total veterans: 63,316 (8.50% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 2,834
    - Korean War: 5,827
    - Vietnam War: 24,790
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 11,103
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 7,178

  • #23. North Carolina
    31/ A1C John Nieves Camacho // wikimedia

    #23. North Carolina

    Total veterans: 666,425 (8.57% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 19,936
    - Korean War: 48,245
    - Vietnam War: 233,373
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 158,803
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 139,729

  • #22. Arkansas
    32/ Michael Barera // wikimedia

    #22. Arkansas

    Total veterans: 197,781 (8.69% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 7,887
    - Korean War: 16,417
    - Vietnam War: 82,486
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 39,273
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 30,854

  • #21. Florida
    33/ Perry Correll // Shutterstock

    #21. Florida

    Total veterans: 1,429,330 (8.71% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 69,515
    - Korean War: 153,529
    - Vietnam War: 520,995
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 284,909
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 230,714

  • #20. Alabama
    34/ mark reinstein // Shutterstock

    #20. Alabama

    Total veterans: 331,076 (8.83% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 9,752
    - Korean War: 28,331
    - Vietnam War: 120,266
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 74,090
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 66,581

  • #19. Colorado
    35/ Sgt. Jonathan Thibault // wikimedia

    #19. Colorado

    Total veterans: 376,108 (8.86% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 10,344
    - Korean War: 24,471
    - Vietnam War: 136,818
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 91,583
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 84,466

  • #18. Idaho
    36/ Department of Defense. Defense Audiovisual Agency; Scene Camera Operator: Mickey Sanborn // wikimedia

    #18. Idaho

    Total veterans: 110,599 (8.89% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 4,286
    - Korean War: 10,519
    - Vietnam War: 43,306
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 21,973
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 18,244

  • #17. Missouri
    37/ U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Justin P. Nesbitt // Wikimedia

    #17. Missouri

    Total veterans: 420,122 (8.97% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 17,314
    - Korean War: 40,472
    - Vietnam War: 160,323
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 76,766
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 64,975

  • #16. New Mexico
    38/ Sue Stokes // Shutterstock

    #16. New Mexico

    Total veterans: 142,187 (8.99% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 5,341
    - Korean War: 12,483
    - Vietnam War: 56,879
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 30,911
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 25,189

  • #15. New Hampshire
    39/ KelseyJ // Shutterstock

    #15. New Hampshire

    Total veterans: 97,864 (9.13% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 4,473
    - Korean War: 9,076
    - Vietnam War: 35,370
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 18,632
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 13,913

  • #14. Oregon
    40/ Oregon National Guard from Salem, Oregon, United States // Wikimedia

    #14. Oregon

    Total veterans: 295,845 (9.18% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 14,322
    - Korean War: 27,221
    - Vietnam War: 115,454
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 51,287
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 44,973

  • #13. Arizona
    41/ TwinsofSedona // wikimedia

    #13. Arizona

    Total veterans: 485,094 (9.18% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 19,106
    - Korean War: 46,868
    - Vietnam War: 189,899
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 93,435
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 78,926

  • #12. Nevada
    42/ SrA Daniel Hughes // wikimedia

    #12. Nevada

    Total veterans: 208,263 (9.23% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 4,978
    - Korean War: 14,393
    - Vietnam War: 80,721
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 42,051
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 38,290

  • #11. Oklahoma
    43/ MSgt Preston Chasteen // wikimedia

    #11. Oklahoma

    Total veterans: 275,808 (9.36% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 8,749
    - Korean War: 22,456
    - Vietnam War: 102,588
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 58,870
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 56,271

  • #10. South Dakota
    44/ Jake DeGroot // Wikimedia

    #10. South Dakota

    Total veterans: 61,405 (9.45% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 1,437
    - Korean War: 5,657
    - Vietnam War: 21,702
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 13,041
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 12,092

  • #9. West Virginia
    45/ Susilyn // Shutterstock

    #9. West Virginia

    Total veterans: 137,939 (9.49% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 5,762
    - Korean War: 11,826
    - Vietnam War: 56,078
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 22,762
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 19,555

  • #8. Washington
    46/ yeowatzup // wikimeida

    #8. Washington

    Total veterans: 537,385 (9.57% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 20,097
    - Korean War: 38,527
    - Vietnam War: 196,101
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 125,633
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 111,941

  • #7. Maine
    47/ Linda Hosek // wikimedia

    #7. Maine

    Total veterans: 102,948 (9.58% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 6,802
    - Korean War: 10,016
    - Vietnam War: 39,938
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 18,530
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 11,827

  • #6. South Carolina
    48/ SSgt Rasheen Douglas // wikimedia

    #6. South Carolina

    Total veterans: 367,504 (9.60% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 9,379
    - Korean War: 27,288
    - Vietnam War: 139,158
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 87,026
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 74,266

  • #5. Hawaii
    49/ Staff Sgt. Jason Fudge // wikimedia

    #5. Hawaii

    Total veterans: 104,719 (9.67% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 3,622
    - Korean War: 7,431
    - Vietnam War: 34,650
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 22,136
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 31,882

  • #4. Virginia
    50/ U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 3rd Class Brian Stueber // wikimedia

    #4. Virginia

    Total veterans: 671,080 (10.44% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 18,844
    - Korean War: 39,889
    - Vietnam War: 205,464
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 224,425
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 197,250

  • #3. Montana
    51/ Joseph Sohm // Shutterstock

    #3. Montana

    Total veterans: 85,461 (10.54% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 3,620
    - Korean War: 7,167
    - Vietnam War: 32,101
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 16,959
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 15,010

  • #2. Wyoming
    52/ Idawriter // Wikimedia

    #2. Wyoming

    Total veterans: 47,535 (10.75% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 1,293
    - Korean War: 3,440
    - Vietnam War: 17,727
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 10,701
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 9,079

  • #1. Alaska
    53/ An Errant Knight // Wikimedia

    #1. Alaska

    Total veterans: 65,814 (12.21% of population 18 years or older)

    - World War II: 695
    - Korean War: 2,011
    - Vietnam War: 19,026
    - Gulf War I (Aug '90 - Aug '01): 20,730
    - Gulf War II (Sep '01 or later): 22,691

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