American Military Decorations
|Air Force||Coast Guard||Name and Remarks|
|Shared with Navy||Medal of Honor|
Awarded by the President in the name of Congress, for action above and beyond the call of duty in the face of the enemy, and marked by gallantry, intrepidity, personal bravery or self-sacrifice so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his or her comrades.
|Shared with Navy||(left to right)|
Distinguished Service Cross
Air Force Cross
The highest awards of the individual armed forces short of the Medal of Honor, given for action against the enemy in the presence of great danger, involving extrodinary heroism, great personal risk and performed in such a manner as to render the individual highly conspicuous among others of equal grade, rate, experience, or position of responsibility.
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Defense Distinguished Service Medal
Transportation Distinguished Service Medal
The highest award given during peacetime; awarded for exceptionally distinguished performance of duty contributing to national security or defense at the highest levels while assigned to a joint activity, and may also be awarded to other senior officers whose direct and individual contributions to national security or defense are recognized as being so exceptional in scope and value as to be equivalent to contributions normally associated with positions encompassing broader responsibilities.
The Transportation Distinguished Service Medal is worn only by Coast Guard officers, and is placed in precedence after the Navy Cross and before the Defense Distinguished Service Medal.
|Distinguished Service Medal|
Awarded to service members who, while serving in any capacity with the Armed Forces, distinguish themselves by exceptionally meritorious service to the Government in a duty of great responsibility.
Awarded to a person who, while serving in any capacity with the U.S. Armed Forces, is cited for gallantry in action against an enemy of the United States while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force, or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party. The required gallantry, while of a lesser degree than that required for the awards of the Distinguished Service, Navy, and Air Force Crosses, must nevertheless have been performed with marked distinction.
|-||-||-||Defense Superior Service Medal|
Awarded by the Secretary of Defense only to members of the Armed Forces of the United States who, after February 6, 1976, rendered superior meritorious service in a position of significant responsibility. The DSSM is specifically intended to recognize exceptionally superior service, and to honor an individual's accomplishments over a sustained period.
|-||-||-||Legion of Merit|
Awarded to all members of the Armed Forces of the United States without reference to degree for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services and achievements. The performance must have been such as to merit recognition of key individuals for service rendered in a clearly exceptional manner. Performance of duties normal to the grade, branch, specialty or assignment, and experience of an individual is not an adequate basis for this award. For service not related to actual war the term "key individual" applies to a narrower range of positions than in time of war and requires evidence of significant achievement. In peacetime, service should be in the nature of a special requirement or of an extremely difficult duty performed in an unprecedented and clearly exceptional manner. However, justification of the award may accrue by virtue of exceptionally meritorious service in a succession of important positions.
|-||-||-||Distinguished Flying Cross|
Awarded to any person who, while serving in any capacity with the Armed Forces of the United States, distinguishes himself by heroism or extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight, evidenced by voluntary action above and beyond the call of duty, and resulting in an accomplishment so exceptional and outstanding as to clearly set the individual apart from his comrades or from other persons in similar circumstances.
|(left to right)|
Navy and Marine Corps Medal
Coast Guard Medal
Awarded to persons of the Armed Forces of the United States or of a friendly foreign nation who, while serving in any capacity with the American Armed Forces, distinguishes themselves by heroism involving personal hazard or danger and the voluntary risk of life under conditions not involving conflict with an armed enemy. The same degree of heroism is required as for the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Awarded to a person who distinguished himself or herself by heroic or meritorious achievement or service, not involving participation in aerial flight, while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States; while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party, for acts of heroism, performed under circumstances described above, which are of lesser degree than required for the award of the Silver Star; or to recognize single acts of merit or meritorious service that are considered of a lesser degree than that required for the award of the Legion of Merit.
Awarded to any person who was wounded or killed by enemy action while in conflict against the United States whether war was declared or not; or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party; or while taken captive and/or held as a prisoner of war.