The Gold Lifesaving Medal and Silver Lifesaving Medal are U. S. decorations issued by the United States Coast Guard. The awards were established by Act of Congress, 20 June 1874. S. C. § 500. These decorations are two of the oldest medals in the United States and were established at the Department of Treasury as Lifesaving Medals First and Second Class; the Department of the Treasury gave the award, but today the United States Coast Guard awards it through the Department of Homeland Security. They are not classified as military decorations, may be awarded to any person. A British Sea Gallantry Medal for saving life was authorized in 1854. Twenty years in the United States the Gold and Silver Lifesaving Medals were first authorized in an Act that furthered the United States Life-Saving Service; the Secretary of the Treasury was directed, among other provisions of the act, to create "medals of honor", to be distinguished as life-saving medals of the first and second class, bestow them upon any persons who endanger their own lives in saving, or endeavoring to save lives from perils of the sea, within the United States, or upon any American vessel.
The Lifesaving Medals have had three designs in their history. The original design in 1874 was "non-portable" and could not be worn by the recipient, but rather displayed much like a trophy. In 1882 the design was changed; the ribbon was red for the Gold Lifesaving light blue for the Silver Lifesaving medal. On 4 August 1949 the medals and ribbons were reduced in size so that they were more proportionate to medals awarded by the U. S. Armed Forces; the ribbons were redesigned to have multiple colors. The laws governing the awarding of medal were amended over the years, is awarded by the Coast Guard; the Commandant of the Coast Guard makes the final determination in authorizing the award. "The Gold Lifesaving Medal or the Silver Lifesaving Medal may be awarded to any person who rescues or endeavors to rescue any other person from drowning, shipwreck, or other perils of the water. The rescue or attempted rescue must either take place in waters within the U. S. or subject to the jurisdiction thereof, or one or the other of the parties must be a citizen of the U.
S. or from a vessel or aircraft owned or operated by citizens of the U. S. "The Lifesaving Medal is issued in two grades, being gold. "The Gold Lifesaving Medal may be awarded to an individual who performed a rescue or attempted rescue at the risk of his or her own life, demonstrates extreme and heroic daring. The Silver Lifesaving Medal may be awarded to an individual who performed a rescue or attempted rescue where the circumstances do not sufficiently distinguish the individual to deserve the medal of gold, but demonstrate such extraordinary effort as to merit recognition. If neither the Gold nor Silver Lifesaving Medal is appropriate a Certificate of Valor or an appropriate Coast Guard Public Service Award may be considered."Until the mid-20th century, the Lifesaving Medal was bestowed upon members of the military. This is due to the creation of a variety of additional military decorations that supplant the Lifesaving Medal; the United States Navy issues the Navy and Marine Corps Medal, instead of the Lifesaving Medal, for sea rescues involving risk of life.
"Military personnel serving on active duty would not be recommended for Gold and Silver Lifesaving Medals. In all other circumstances, a military award should be considered." The Lifesaving Medal is authorized for wear on U. S. military uniforms. The Lifesaving Medal is unusual among U. S. medals because it is struck from the eponymous precious metal, silver or gold. Multiple awards of the Lifesaving Medal are denoted by award stars on the decoration's ribbon and a gold clasp, inscribed with the recipient's name, is worn on the actual medal. Since 1874, more than 600 Gold Lifesaving Medals and more than 1,900 Silver Lifesaving Medals have been awarded. George Freeth, a swimming instructor and the "Father of Modern Surfing", who rescued seven fishermen off Venice Beach during a winter storm in December of 1908. Vice Admiral Harry G. Hamlet, U. S. Coast Guard – While in command of USS Marietta in the Bay of Biscay on 28 April 1919, rescued a crew of 47 persons from the sinking USS James Sergeant Marcus Hanna – Only person to receive both the Medal of Honor and the Gold Lifesaving Medal.
Joshua James – Legendary lifesaver. Jonas Johns - Native American who rescued the 14 man crew of the schooner Lily Grace wrecked near Gray's Harbor, Washington in January 1887 and a year rescued 3 more sailors. Medal awarded on December 9, 1889. James Larsin and Wisconsin state legislator. Ida Lewis, lighthouse keeper and first female recipient. Chief Warrant Officer John Allen Midgett Jr. USCG Rasmus Midgett Captain Henry C. Mustin, USN - Naval aviation pioneer. Sheppard Shreaves, for rescuing Henry Breault Lenny Skutnik Arland D. Williams, Jr. Richard Etheridge, Benjamin Bowser, Dorman Pugh, Theodore Meekins, Lewis Wescott, Stanley Wise, William Irving of the Pea Island Life-Saving Station, for rescue of the crew from the E. S. Newman on 11 October 1896. Awarded gold medals posthumously on 5 March 1996. Benjamin Dailey, keeper of the Cape Hatteras Lifeboat Station, led the rescue of the crew of the Ephraim Williams. William Babb, for the 1885 rescue of the American schooner A. C. Maxwell Coxswain Bernard C.
Webber, EN3 Andrew Fitzgerald.
Commandant of the Coast Guard
The Commandant of the United States Coast Guard is the service chief and highest-ranking member of the United States Coast Guard. The Commandant is an admiral, appointed for a four-year term by the President of the United States upon confirmation by the United States Senate; the Commandant is assisted by a vice commandant, an admiral, two Area Commanders and two Deputy Commandants, all of whom are vice admirals. Though the United States Coast Guard is one of the five military branches of the United States, unlike the other service chiefs, the Commandant of the Coast Guard is not a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; the Commandant is, entitled to the same supplemental pay as the Joint Chiefs, per 37 U. S. C. § 414, is accorded privilege of the floor under Senate Rule XXIII as a de facto JCS member during Presidential addresses. The Commandant maintains operational command over the Coast Guard, unlike the chiefs of the other services, who serve only administrative roles. Thus, while the operational chain of command for the other services goes from the President through the Secretary of Defense to the combatant commanders of the unified combatant commands and control of the Coast Guard goes from the President through the Secretary of Homeland Security through to the Commandant.
Prior to the creation of the Department of Homeland Security in 2003, the United States Coast Guard operated under and the Commandant reported to the Secretary of Transportation from 1966 to 2003, the Secretary of the Treasury from 1790 until 1966. The title of Commandant dates to a 1923 act that distributed the commissioned line and engineer officers of the U. S. Coast Guard in grades. Before 1923, the rank and title of the head of the Coast Guard was "captain-commandant." The rank "captain-commandant" originated in the Revenue Cutter Service in 1908. The original holder of that rank was the Chief of the Revenue Cutter Service; the Coast Guard traces the lineage of Commandants back to Captain Leonard G. Shepard, chief of the Revenue Marine Bureau though he never received the title of Captain-Commandant; the Captain-Commandant position was created in 1908 when Captain Worth G. Ross was the first to hold the position. Although he was retired, Ross's predecessor, Captain Charles F. Shoemaker, was elevated to the rank of Captain-Commandant.
Shoemaker's predecessor, Captain Shepard, had died and was not elevated to the rank. Chiefs exercised centralized control over the Revenue Marine Bureau. Captain Alexander V. Fraser, USRM, 1843–1848 Captain Richard Evans, USRM, 1848–1849In 1849 the Revenue Marine Bureau was dissolved, the Revenue Marine fell under the control the Commissioner of Customs until the Revenue Marine Bureau was again established in 1869. N. Broughton Devereux, 1869–1871 Sumner I. Kimball, 1871–1878 Ezra Clark, 1878–1885 Peter Bonnett, 1885–1889 There have been 26 Commandants of the Coast Guard since the office of Chief of the Revenue Marine Bureau was transferred to a military billet; this includes the current Commandant. Vice Commandant of the United States Coast Guard Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Footnotes Citations References cited Commandant's official website
The Achievement Medal is a military decoration of the United States Armed Forces. The Achievement Medal was first proposed as a means to recognize the contributions of junior officers and enlisted personnel who were not eligible to receive the higher Commendation Medal or the Meritorious Service Medal; each military service issues its own version of the Achievement Medal, with a fifth version authorized by the U. S. Department of Defense for joint military activity; the Achievement Medal is awarded for outstanding achievement or meritorious service not of a nature that would otherwise warrant awarding the Commendation Medal. Award authority rests with local commanders, granting a broad discretion of when and for what action the Achievement Medal may be awarded; the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, is the United States Navy and U. S. Marine Corps' version of the Achievement Medal; the U. S. Navy was the first branch of the U. S. Armed Forces to award such a medal, doing so in 1961, when it was dubbed the “Secretary of the Navy Commendation for Achievement Medal”.
This title was shortened in 1967 to the "Navy Achievement Medal". On 19 August 1994, to recognize those of the United States Marine Corps who had received the Navy Achievement Medal, the name of the decoration was changed to the "Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal"; the award is referred to in shorthand speech as a "NAM". From its inception in the early 1960s to 2002, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal could not be approved by the commanding officers of ships, aviation squadron, or shore activities who held the rank of Commander. Awards for crewmembers had to be submitted to the Commodore or Air Wing Commander or the first appropriate O-6 in the chain of command for approval, who signed the award and returned it; this led to a lower awarding rate when compared to similar size units in the Army or Air Force awarding their own achievement medals considering that those services did not establish their respective achievement medals until the 1980s. Since 2002 the commanding officers of aviation squadrons and ships have had the authority to award NAMs without submission to higher authority.
For the Army, battalion commanders (or the first O-5 in a soldier's chain of command for the Army Achievement Medal. The United States Coast Guard created its own Achievement Medal in 1967. S. Army and U. S. Air Force issued their own versions of the award with the Army Achievement Medal in 1981 and Air Force Achievement Medal in 1980. Effective 11 September 2001, the Army Achievement Medal may be awarded in a combat area. Since this change over sixty thousand Army Achievement Medals have been awarded in theaters of operations such as Iraq and Afghanistan; the Joint Service Achievement Medal was created in 1983. This award was considered a Department of Defense decoration senior to the service department Achievement Medals; the following devices may be authorized to be worn on the following achievement medals suspension ribbon and service ribbon: All Achievement Medals, "C" device, which signifies meritorious performance "under combat conditions", after January 2016 Army Achievement Medal, for additional awards - oak leaf clusters Air Force Achievement Medal, for additional awards - oak leaf clusters Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, for additional awards - 5/16 inch stars Coast Guard Achievement Medal, for additional awards - 5/16 inch stars Joint Service Achievement Medal, for additional awards - oak leaf clusters Coast Guard Achievement Medal - Operational Distinguishing Device Coast Guard Achievement Medal - Combat Distinguishing Device The following ribbon devices were authorized in the past but have now been discontinued: Air Force Achievement Medal - "V" Device, until December 2016 Army Achievement Medal - "V" Device, until December 2016 Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal - Combat Distinguishing Device, until December 2016 Awards and decorations of the United States government Awards and decorations of the United States military Awards and decorations of the United States Coast Guard Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal Citation Examples HRC Joint Awards FAQ
United States Department of Homeland Security
The United States Department of Homeland Security is a cabinet department of the U. S. federal government with responsibilities in public security comparable to the interior or home ministries of other countries. Its stated missions involve anti-terrorism, border security and customs, cyber security, disaster prevention and management, it was created in response to the September 11 attacks and is the youngest U. S. cabinet department. In fiscal year 2017, it was allocated a net discretionary budget of $40.6 billion. With more than 240,000 employees, DHS is the third largest Cabinet department, after the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs. Homeland security policy is coordinated at the White House by the Homeland Security Council. Other agencies with significant homeland security responsibilities include the Departments of Health and Human Services and Energy. Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen resigned on April 7, 2019, effective April 10. By law, Undersecretary for Management Claire Grady was to become the acting Secretary of Homeland Security.
On April 7, President Donald J. Trump designated the current U. S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan as acting Secretary. McAleenan named David Pekoske, who also serves as the TSA Administrator, as the acting Deputy Secretary. Whereas the Department of Defense is charged with military actions abroad, the Department of Homeland Security works in the civilian sphere to protect the United States within, at, outside its borders, its stated goal is to prepare for and respond to domestic emergencies terrorism. On March 1, 2003, DHS absorbed the U. S. assumed its duties. In doing so, it divided the enforcement and services functions into two separate and new agencies: Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Citizenship and Immigration Services; the investigative divisions and intelligence gathering units of the INS and Customs Service were merged forming Homeland Security Investigations, the primary investigative arm of DHS. Additionally, the border enforcement functions of the INS, including the U.
S. Border Patrol, the U. S. Customs Service, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service were consolidated into a new agency under DHS: U. S. Customs and Border Protection; the Federal Protective Service falls under the National Programs Directorate. The Department of Homeland Security is headed by the Secretary of Homeland Security with the assistance of the Deputy Secretary; the department contains the components listed below. AgenciesUnited States Citizenship and Immigration Services: Processes and examines citizenship and asylum requests from aliens. U. S. Customs and Border Protection: Law enforcement agency that enforces U. S. laws along its international borders including its enforcement of U. S. immigration and agriculture laws while at and patrolling between all U. S. ports-of-entry. U. S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement: Law enforcement agency divided into two bureaus:Homeland Security Investigations investigates violations of more than 400 U. S. laws and gathers intelligence on national and international criminal activities that threaten the security of the homeland.
Transportation Security Administration: Responsible for aviation security, as well as land and water transportation security United States Coast Guard: Military service responsible for law enforcement, maritime security, national defense, maritime mobility, protection of natural resources. United States Secret Service: Law enforcement agency tasked with two distinct and critical national security missions:Investigative Mission – The investigative mission of the USSS is to safeguard the payment and financial systems of the United States from a wide range of financial and electronic-based crimes. Protective Mission – The protective mission of the USSS is to ensure the safety of the President of the United States, the Vice President of the United States, their immediate families, foreign heads of state. Federal Emergency Management Agency: agency that oversees the federal government's response to natural disasters like earthquakes, tornadoes, forest fires. Passports for U. S. citizens are issued by the U.
S. Department of State, not the Department of Homeland Security. Advisory groups: Homeland Security Advisory Council: State and local government, first responders, private sector, academics National Infrastructure Advisory Council: Advises on security of public and private information systems Homeland Security Science and Technology Advisory Committee: Advise the Under Secretary for Science and Technology. Critical Infrastructure Partnership Advisory Council: Coordinate infrastructure protection with private sector and other levels of government Interagency Coordinating Council on Emergency Preparedness and Individuals with Disabilities Task Force on New Americans: "An inter-agency effort to help immigrants learn English, embrace the common core of American civic culture, become American."Other components: Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Office: Counter attempts by terrorists or other threat actors to carry out an attack against the United States or its interests using a weapon of mass destruction.
Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen established the CWMD Office in December 2017 by consolidating the Domes
A Marksmanship Ribbon device is a miniature metal rifle, target, service star, or letter E or S which may be worn if authorized on a Marksmanship Ribbon awarded to members of the United States Coast Guard, United States Air Force, United States Navy. The Air Force use a bronze service star on top of their marksmanship ribbon to represent a qualification of expert in an additional weapon other than the one that earned the Airman the qualification ribbon; the Air Force's Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon, as it is known, is awarded to those who qualify as expert with either the service rifle or service pistol. The Navy and Coast Guard present two marksmanship ribbon devices for scoring as a Sharpshooter or Expert on a pistol and rifle qualification course: the bronze colored S Device and E Device for the Navy and silver colored S Device and E Device for the Coast Guard; the Air Force uses a 3⁄16" bronze star to indicate expert qualification in both rifle and service pistol. The Coast Guard has additional ribbon devices which represent accomplishments in Civilian Marksmanship Program sanctioned competitions.
The Expert Marksmanship device should not be confused with the Battle E Device. The Navy and Coast Guard Expert Marksmanship device is worn on the Marksmanship Ribbon in lieu of the full sized Marksmanship Medal; when wearing the Marksmanship Medal, the Marksmanship Ribbon with the Expert device is not worn. For a period of time, the E Device was bronze until three consecutive expert qualifications were achieved the device would change to silver with a permanent award status. Coast Guardsman who have been awarded the bronze or silver Coast Guard Excellence-in-Competition Pistol Shot or Rifleman Badge can wear a bronze or silver miniature replica of the M1911 or M14 attached to the U. S. Coast Guard Pistol or Rifle Marksmanship Ribbon in lieu of wearing the EIC badge; those Coast Guardsman who have been awarded the Coast Guard Distinguished Pistol Shot or Marksman Badge can place a small gold metal replica of a pistol or rifle target on the appropriate marksmanship ribbon vise having to wear the distinguished badge on their dress uniforms.
From 1942 to 1960, the Navy awarded unique Distinguished Marksmanship Ribbons vs. devices for their existing marksmanship ribbons. Today, only Distinguished Marksmanship Badges are authorized for wear on Navy uniforms; some State National Guard organizations award marksmanship ribbons to their top shooters. In the Missouri National Guard, the top twelve guardsman selected to represent their state at the Winston P. Wilson Rifle and Pistol Championships are awarded a Governor's Twelve Ribbon. Any guardsman who earns the award more than once wear a bronze or silver Hawthorn Cluster device on top of the ribbon. A bronze Hawthorn Cluster notes the award of a second and seceding awards while a silver Hawthorn Cluster is worn in lieu of five bronze Hawthorn Clusters. United States military award devices Marksmanship Ribbon Marksmanship Medal Marksmanship badges Awards and decorations of the United States military
Coast Guard Arctic Service Medal
The Coast Guard Arctic Service Medal was established on 20 May 1976 by Commandant of the Coast Guard Admiral Owen W. Siler; the medal is awarded to any member of the United States Coast Guard who performs twenty one days of consecutive duty afloat or ashore north of the Arctic Circle. Air crews flying in and out of areas north of the Arctic Circle may be awarded the medal for 21 days of non-consecutive service; the medal depicts a polar bear under the North Star, while the reverse side carries the Coast Guard Shield. The Coast Guard Arctic Service Medal may be awarded to any person who meets the qualifications related to service in defined geographic areas or at specific duty stations. Only one medal may be awarded per year in the case of qualifying air crews. Qualifying service is as follows: Members of the Coast Guard who, during summer operations, who serve in any Coast Guard mission north of the Arctic Circle for 21 consecutive days under competent orders. Member of the Coast Guard who, during winter operations, serve or have served aboard a Coast Guard vessel operating in polar waters north of latitude 60 degrees North in the Bering Sea, Davis Strait, or Denmark Strait for 21 consecutive days under competent orders.
Members of the Coast Guard who serve on the remote LORAN Stations at Cape Atholl, Greenland. Members of the Coast Guard who participate in flights as a member of the crew of an aircraft flying to or from stations listed above, or any shore locations north of the Arctic Circle in support of Coast Guard missions; the minimum time requirement is 21 non-consecutive days under competent orders, no more than one day of service is credited for flights in and out during any 24-hour period. Civilians may be recommended for the award of the Coast Guard Arctic Service Medal for their service with the Coast Guard. Recommendations for civilians must be sent directly to the Commandant for an award decision. Awards and decorations of the United States military Navy Arctic Service Ribbon
Good Conduct Medal (United States)
The Good Conduct Medal is one of the oldest military awards of the United States Armed Forces. The U. S. Navy's variant of the Good Conduct Medal was established in 1869, the Marine Corps version in 1896, the Coast Guard version in 1923, the Army version in 1941, the Air Force version in 1963; the criteria for a Good Conduct Medal are defined by Executive Orders 8809, 9323, 10444. The Good Conduct Medal, each one specific to one of the five branches of the U. S. Armed Forces, is awarded to any active duty enlisted member of the United States military who completes three consecutive years of "honorable and faithful service"; such service implies that a standard enlistment was completed without any non-judicial punishment, disciplinary infractions, or court martial offenses. If a service member commits an offense, the three-year mark "resets" and a service member must perform an additional three years of service without having to be disciplined, before the Good Conduct may be authorized. During times of war, the Good Conduct Medal may be awarded for one year of faithful service.
The Good Conduct Medal may be awarded posthumously, to any service member killed in the line of duty. Service for the Good Conduct Medal must be performed on active duty; this restriction does not apply to full-time active duty enlisted members in the Reserve Component, such as Army and Air Force personnel in an Active Guard and Reserve status, Navy personnel in a Full Time Support known as Training & Administration of the Reserve, Marine Corps Active Reserve programs. On 1 January 2014, the Navy discontinued the Naval Reserve Meritorious Service Medal, a de facto Good Conduct Medal for Navy Reserve enlisted personnel. Since that date, all Navy enlisted personnel have received the Navy Good Conduct Medal, whether in a full-time active duty or a part-time drilling reserve status; the various services have established separate Reserve Good Conduct Medals, albeit under various names, as a comparable award available to enlisted Reserve and National Guard members who satisfactorily perform annual training, drill duty and any additional active duty of less than 3 consecutive years duration.
The exception, as stated, is the United States Navy, which discontinued that service's separate award for Reserve Component enlisted personnel as of 1 January 2014. Enlisted Navy Reservists now earn time towards the Navy Good Conduct Medal, the same as the Active Component and any time earned towards an unawarded Naval Reserve Meritorious Service Medal is automatically carried over to the Navy Good Conduct Medal; the Navy Good Conduct Medal is the oldest Good Conduct Medal, dating back to 26 April 1869. There have been a total of four versions of the Navy Good Conduct Medal, the first version of, issued from 1870 to 1884; the original Navy Good Conduct Medal was not worn on a uniform, but issued with discharge papers as a badge to present during reenlistment. A sailor in the Navy received a new Good Conduct Medal for each honorable enlistment completed; the second version of the Navy Good Conduct Medal was issued between 1880 and 1884. The medal was considered a "transitional decoration" and was the first of the Good Conduct Medals to be worn on a uniform.
The medal was phased out by 1885 and a new medal issued between 1885 and 1961. The new medal was a Good Conduct medallion suspended from an all red ribbon. Enlistment bars, denoting each honorable enlistment completed, were pinned on the ribbon as attachments. There was slight oddity during the Spanish–American War when the Navy created the Specially Meritorious Service Medal which had an all red suspension and service ribbon. There were recorded cases of Navy enlisted personnel who were awarded both the Good Conduct Medal and the Specially Meritorious Service Medal who wore two red service ribbons on their Navy service uniforms; this is one of the rare times in the history of U. S. military awards that two awards had identical ribbons. In the 1950s bronze and silver 3/16 inch stars, with one silver star worn in lieu of five bronze stars, replaced the enlistment bars. Although the medal itself had not changed since 1884, in 1961 a ring suspension for the ribbon and medal combination was adopted, differentiating the suspension from its Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal counterpart and standardizing it with the majority of other service medals.
It is this 1961 version of the Navy Good Conduct Medal, still in use today. The current Navy Good Conduct Medal is issued to every active duty enlisted sailor who completes three years of honorable and faithful service since 1 January 1996. For prior awards to personnel between 1 November 1963 and 1 January 1996, four years of service were required; the four year requirement applies for award of the Navy Good Conduct Medal from its original establishment until 1 November 1963. Additional awards of the Navy Good Conduct Medal are denoted by bronze and silver 3/16 inch stars; the reverse side of the medal has three words, "FIDELITY ZEAL OBEDIENCE" superimposed in a semicircle. Upon 12 years of honorable and faithful service, sailors are allowed to w