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Guest John Sukey

The original "Widow Maker" would have been the martin B26. High landing speeds and insufficient crew training. but it was also the bomber that had the fewest combat losses.

the F104 had the dubious distinction of cutting the pilots legs off at the knees during ejection. Thats why F104 pilots became the only ones to wear Spurs in the cockpit. they are attached by cable to the seat. On initiating the ejection sequence, the cables pull the pilots legs back to the seat so the instrument panel does'nt cut them off when he leaves.

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the F104 had the dubious distinction of cutting the pilots legs off at the knees during ejection.  Thats why F104 pilots became the only ones to wear Spurs in the cockpit.  they are attached by cable to the seat.  On initiating the ejection sequence, the cables pull the pilots legs back to the seat so the instrument panel does'nt cut them off when he leaves.

UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ohmy.gif :excl: :excl: :excl: :excl: :excl:

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  • 3 months later...
  • 3 months later...

A bit more.  The medal of honor is the only U.S. medal for which there is NO miniature.  So on mess dress you would wear it suspended from the neck ribbon and the other awards would be worn in miniature on the jacket.  It is also the ONLY medal that is ILLEGAL to sell or trade.   Obviously collectors do have them as the recipients pass away.  The way that is gotten around is to sell a lesser award for the price of the medal of honor and give away the higher award.  It doesn't happen very often.  Usualy to medals that are very old.

Another note.  There are different medals of honor for different services.  Air Force, Army, Navy.  (marines and coast guard would come under the navy)

There is also a space medal of honor.  The only U.S. medal inset with a diamond.  10 were made, none have been awarded.

Civil War medal is on a standard suspension as are pre-WW1 medals.  The neck suspension came later.

Couple of corrections: There were miniatures of the MOH but they are not worn anymore.

There have been 13 awarded NASA Space Medals of Honor.

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Hi Coastie,

   Interesting about the NASA awards. Can you tell us more?

  John

Here goes:

Neil Armstrong - 1 October 1979

Frank Borman - 1 October 1979

Charles Conrad - 1 October 1979

John Glenn - 1 October 1979

Alan Shepard, Jr.,- 1 October 1979

Virgil "Gus" Grissom (posthumous) - 1 October 1979

John Young - April 1981

Lt. Gen. Thomas P Stafford, USAF, - 19 January 1993

James A Lovell - 26 July 1995

Shannon Lucid, - 3 December 1996

Lt. Cdr. Roger Chaffe, USN (posthumous),- 3 December 1997

Lt. Col. Edward White, USAF (posthumous) - 3 December 1997

Captain William M. Shepherd, USN, - 15 January 2003

I don't have the individual citations, information courtesy of "Call of Duty".

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Hi Coastie, and welcome aboard The Forum........Why is it that no MOH's were awarded to Astronauts prior to 1979? Having watched Apollo 13 yesterday i'm curious...!!

Thanks for the welcome . The SMOH was established as law in 1969. But can off no explanation as to why it took so long to present it.. I will try to research this a little more.

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Guest Darrell

Thanks for the welcome . The SMOH was established as law in 1969. But can off no explanation as to why it took so long to present it.. I will try to research this a little more.

Actually Laurence, in The Call of Duty (2nd edition) there are no mention for the personal on the Space Shuttle disasters sad.gif

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In regards to the Apollo XIII astronauts - They received from President Nixon the Presidential Medal of Freedom as well as the whole Apollo XIII Missions Operations Team.

It also appears that astronauts James Lovell, USN and Colonels Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins received the PMOF.

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Mr. Chairman:

With respect to the comparison of the MOH to the VC perhaps a comparison of awards made as a percentage or ratio of forces involved may put things in a more appropriate perspective rather than just raw award numbers.

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What about the other awards such as the Bronze & Silver Star, whats the criteria for those?

How is it that during the current conflict in Iraq, a vast number of British serviceman have come to be awarded American medals?

Bronze Star Medal

Major Adam Timothy Stephen CRAWFORD

Royal Marines

Lieutenant Colonel Jani MAROK

Royal Marines

Major Simon James BANTON

The Staffordshire Regiment

Corporal Thomas Edward BOND

Royal Tank Regiment

Major General John COOPER DSO MBE

Late The King?s Own Scottish Borderers

Lieutenant Colonel Neil Davidson FRASER

Royal Corps of Signals

Lieutenant Colonel Mark Andre HOLDEN

The Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters

Colonel Paul Richard Lorimer LANE

Late Royal Regiment of Artillery

Warrant Officer Class 2 Lee James MASON

Royal Corps of Signals

Major John Stuart McDONALD

The Parachute Regiment

Major John Christopher PEREZ MBE

Royal Gibraltar Regiment

Major Michael William SHERVINGTON

The Parachute Regiment

Colonel Mark Evan WARING OBE

Late Royal Regiment of Artillery

Captain Colin WHITWORTH

The Royal Logistic Corps

Lieutenant Colonel Peter Simon Paton WORSLEY

Royal Regiment of Artillery

Major John Charles Julian WRIGHT

The Royal Anglian Regiment

Who decides, who and for what these medals are awarded? I assume for such cases, that result in the death of America troops, that this type of thing would go unrewarded, as it draws attention to the fact that American soldiers are being killed, am I right? Are these awards given out as good will awards, to the likes of Liason Officers, etc? Or do you have to do something of genuine note? Are they given out like sweets? I feel that to a certain exstent, not to be little the British awards, but these seem to be given out more regularly than is true of 10 to 15 years ago. Especially in view of the current conflict in Iraq, which is is very unpopular in the UK as well as the US.

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Bronze Stars seem to be pretty widely and commonly awarded these days, for everything from low-level bravery to hearing a story from one of your mates that shots had been fired in anger somewhere, sometime. A Silver Star, however, usually represents something real.

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The Bronze Star can be awarded for meritorious service in a combat zone or for gallantry not meriting a higher award. The Silver Star is a combat gallantry award. As Ed mentions, the Bronze Star is easily given (as it was meant to be from the beginning).

Most of the Bronze Stars will fall into the first category (especially to officers), i.e., roughly equivalent to an MBE. ORs tend to get the gallantry award.

Awards to allies have always been problematic. In WWII, Korea and Vietnam, there was a flow of American awards to Commonwealth forces, usually to those who were in a US chain of command (but not always). British awards to Americans tend to follow the same pattern. There are political aspects to both giving and receiving allied awards, and those usually supersede any evaluation of merit/gallantry.

The greatest difficulty in comparing awards in situations like this is that US and British awards system are based on very different views of awards. The US system is much more flexible (good and bad) and attuned to many awards for service rather than gallantry; where the British system is less flexible and geared mostly toward gallantry awards. It makes no great sense to denigrate the award of a Bronze Star if you do not understand that it was created to recognize sustained combat service and was meant to be liberally awarded.

Jeff Floyd

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Well said, Jeff. In some ways it may make sense to see a Bronze Star are something closer to a MiD than anything else in the British system? Or maybe we could compare it to a WWI Iron Cross 2nd class?

But such analogies and comparisons are always problematic, but they are also probably inevitable. It is also dangerous to believe that there is/was ever a fixed, unchanging, non-fluid, "honours system" (or that there is ever any "system" at all underlying these things).

Folks like us think more about the place and role and niche and history of these awards than ANYONE involved in awarding or receiving them ever does, ever has, ever will.

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To echo Ed's and Jeff's points, and as has been noted in various discussions at WAF on award comparisons before, you can't adequately compare a particular US award to a particular foreign award, since you can't even compare an award from one service to that of another service, or an award from one war to that of another, or even from different periods in a war.

Consider Ed's example. An Iron Cross 2nd Class given in Sept. 1914, when it was Prussia's premier egalitarian bravery award, can't really be compared to an Iron Cross 2nd Class given in October 1918, when it was just one of millions.

A Bronze Star given in 1944 in the ETO would be a different animal from one given in 1969 in Vietnam (and one given in 1965 in Vietnam would be different).

And given their differing standards (and the lack of as many lower awards in the Army*), an Army-awarded Bronze Star and a Marine Corps-awarded Bronze Star are two different awards.

Ed, a comparison with a MID might not be too much of a stretch, but as I recall, the Silver Star Medal was originally created to replace the Silver Citation Stars on the WW1 Victory Medal, so to some extent the Silver Star was comparable to a MID or a Croix de Guerre with Palm, with the DSC at the time being closer to a Military Cross/Military Medal (again, caveated comparison). This of course would not be a comparison to last beyond WW1.

With the Bronze Star Medal, it is also important to remember the valor/merit distinction. A Bronze Star Medal for merit is relatively common, especially for the Army. As of 31 July 2005, for Operation Iraqi Freedom, the Army had awarded 27,953 of them. For Operation Enduring Freedom, the number is 8,363. As of April 28, 2005, the Marine Corps had awarded 619 for OIF and 46 for OEF (where the Marine component is small).

But for valor, the numbers drop significantly. For OIF, the Marine Corps has awarded 396 Bronze Stars with the "V" Device indicating valor and for OEF, just 25. The Army has awarded 837 for OIF and 451 for OEF.

When you consider the number of troops who have served in these campaigns (and the fact that there are a few multiple Bronze Star recipients), the ratio for the Army is roughly somewhere around one Bronze Star for every 15 soldiers and one Bronze Star with "V" for every 400 soldiers.

I don't even have a guess for the total number of Marines who have served in OEF and OIF, but I do have a rough metric for how many saw combat. There have been 49,582 awards of the Combat Action Ribbon for OIF and 5,084 for OEF. So one in 125 Iraq veterans and one in 200 Afghanistan veterans who saw combat received a Bronze Star for Valor. In Iraq, about one in 25 Marine combat veterans received a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with "V", and one in 15 received a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with "V" (multiple recipients skewers the ratios somewhat).

For the higher awards, the Army has awarded one Medal of Honor for OIF, one DSC for OIF, one DSC for OEF, 165 Silver Stars for OIF, and 37 Silver Stars for OEF. The Marine Corps has awarded 8 Navy Crosses for OIF, 24 Silver Stars for OIF and one Silver Star for OEF. The Navy has awarded 2 Navy Crosses (both posthumous) for OEF and one for OIF and the Air Force has awarded two Air Force Crosses (both posthumous) for OEF (I don't know Navy or Air Force Silver Star numbers).

____________

* The Army Achievement Medal may not be awarded for combat, so the lowest Army award for combat is the Army Commendation Medal, with the Bronze Star Medal next. The Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, however, may be awarded for combat, both for merit and for valor, so with the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal there are two levels of award before the sea services reach the Bronze Star Medal. As for the Air Force, the Air Force Achievement Medal cannot be awarded for valor, but may be awarded for combat merit.

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Some corrections:

The Army has awarded two DSCs for Iraq. One to Master Sergeant Donald R. Hollenbaugh, a Delta Force (1st SFOD-D) operator, and one to Col. James H. Coffman, Jr., a Special Forces officer who was serving as an advisor to an Iraqi Special Police Commando unit. The Afghanistan DSC was to Maj. Mark E. Mitchell, another Special Forces officer.

The Marine Corps awards site indicates eight Navy Crosses to Marines for OIF, but I can only account for seven. They may be counting the one Navy award, which was to a Navy corpsman assigned to a Marine unit.

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The Medal of Honor

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Medal of Honor is the highest medal awarded by the United States. It has only been awarded 3,428 times in the nation's history. Below is an excerpt of the Army regulation that describes the eligibility criteria for award of the Medal of Honor...

a. The Medal of Honor [Army], section 3741, title 10, United States Code (10 USC 3741), was established by Joint Resolution of Congress, 12 July 1862 (amended by acts 9 July 1918 and 25 July 1963).

b. The Medal of Honor is awarded by the President in the name of Congress to a person who, while a member of the Army, distinguishes himself or herself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life or her life above and beyond the call of duty 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. The deed performed must have been one of personal bravery or self-sacrifice so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his comrades and must have involved risk of life. Incontestable proof of the performance of the service will be exacted and each recommendation for the award of this decoration will be considered on the standard of extraordinary merit.

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Distinguished Service Cross

a. The Distinguished Service Cross, section 3742, title 10, United States Code (10 USC 3742), was established by Act of Congress 9 July 1918 (amended by act of 25 July 1963).

b. The Distinguished Service Cross is awarded to a person who while serving in any capacity with the Army, distinguished himself or herself by extraordinary heroism not justifying the award of a Medal of Honor; while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States; while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing or 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. The act or acts of heroism must have been so notable and have involved risk of life so extraordinary as to set the individual apart from his or her comrades.

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Distinguished Service Medal

a. The Distinguished Service Medal, section 3743, title 10, United States Code (10 USC 3743), was established by Act of Congress 9 July 1918.

b. The Distinguished Service Medal is awarded to any person who while serving in any capacity with the U.S. Army, has distinguished himself or herself by exceptionally meritorious service to the Government in a duty of great responsibility. The performance must be such as to merit recognition for service which is clearly exceptional. Exceptional performance of normal duty will not alone justify an award of this decoration.

c. For service not related to actual war, the term "duty of great responsibility" applies to a narrower range of positions than in time of war and requires evidence of conspicuously significant achievement. However, justification of the award may accrue by virtue of exceptionally meritorious service in a succession of high positions of great importance.

d. Awards may be made to persons other than members of the Armed Forces of the United States for wartime services only, and then only under exceptional circumstances with the express approval of the President in each case.

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Silver Star

a. The Silver Star, section 3746, title 10, United States Code (10 USC 3746), was established by Act of Congress 9 July 1918 (amended by act of 25 July 1963).

b. The Silver Star is awarded to a person who, while serving in any capacity with the U.S. Army, 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 Distinguished Service Cross, must nevertheless have been performed with marked distinction.

c. It is awarded upon letter application to Commander, PERSCOM, ATTN: TAPC-PDA, Alexandria, VA 22332-0471, to those individuals who, while serving in any capacity with the U.S. Army, received a citation for gallantry in action in World War I published in orders issued by a headquarters commanded by a general officer.

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Legion of Merit

a. The Legion of Merit, section 1121, title 10, United States Code (10 USC 1121), was established by Act of Congress 20 July 1942.

b. The Legion of Merit is awarded to any member of the Armed Forces of the United States or a friendly foreign nation who has distinguished himself or herself by exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services and achievements.

c. Criteria for members of the Armed Forces of the united States army as follows:

(1) 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.

(2) For service not related to actual war, the term "key individuals" 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.

(3) Award will be made without reference to degree.

d. Criteria for member of Armed Forces of foreign nations is in AR 672-7©.

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Distinguished Flying Cross

a. The Distinguished Flying Cross, section 3749, title 10, United States Code (10 USC 3749), was established by Act of Congress 2 July 1926.

b. The Distinguished Flying Cross is awarded to any person who, while serving in any capacity with the Army of the United States, distinguished himself or herself by heroism or extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight. The performance of the act of heroism must be evidenced by voluntary action above and beyond the call of duty. The extraordinary achievement must have resulted in an accomplishment so exceptional and outstanding as to clearly set the individual apart from his or her comrades or from other persons in similar circumstances. Awards will be made only to recognize single acts of heroism or extraordinary achievement and will not be made in recognition of sustained operational activities against an armed enemy.

Edited by bigjarofwasps
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Soldier's Medal

a. The Soldier's Medal, section 3750, title 10, United States Code (10 USC 3750) was established by Act of Congress 2 July 1926.

b. The Soldier's Medal is awarded to any person of the Armed Forces of the United States or of a friendly foreign nation who, while serving in any capacity with the Army of the United States, distinguished himself or herself by heroism not involving actual conflict with an enemy. The same degree of heroism is required as for the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross. The performance must have involved personal hazard or danger and the voluntary risk of life under conditions not involving conflict with an armed enemy. Awards will not be made solely on the basis of having saved a life.

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