Most members of the SS never received SS long service awards. Instead, they wore the crosses given to any uniformed personnel of the Nazi Party. But full time members of the SS Totenkopf (concentration camp) staff, cadre at the Junkerschulen in Bad T?lz and Braunschweig
and career enlistees in the SS-VT (which became the Waffen SS) did.
This is one such-- Waffen SS Hauptsturmf?hrer Josef Bucher. Born in 1917, he had served as a 17 year old guard at Dachau in 1934-35, graduating in the class of 1935 from SS Junkerschule Braunschweig to be commissioned as an 18 1/2 year old Untersturmf?hrer in 1936. After serving in the SD and higher command staffs of the "black" SS, he donned field gray to serve in Waffen SS Division "Das Reich" 1940-43 and in Waffen SS Division "Totenkopf" in 1944, being wounded 4 times and receiving both classes of the Iron Cross, the 1941/42 East Medal, and Infantry Assault badge.
Courtesy of Eric K.