What is a Bronze Star?
This decoration was authorized by Executive Order No. 9419 on Feb. 4, 1944. It is awarded to a person in any branch of the military who, while serving in any capacity with the armed forces of the United States on or after Dec. 7, 1941, shall have distinguished themselves by heroic or meritorious achievement or service, not involving participation in aerial flight, in connection with military operations against an armed enemy.
The Bronze Star Medal may be awarded by the secretary of a U.S. military department or the secretary of transportation with regard to the U.S. Coast Guard when not operating as a service in the Navy, or by such military commanders, or other appropriate officers as the secretary concerned may designate, to any person who, while serving in any capacity in or with the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Space Force or Coast Guard of the United States.
What is a Bronze Star Medal award criteria?
The award recognizes acts of heroism performed in ground combat if they are of lesser degree than that required for the Silver Star. It also recognizes single acts of merit and meritorious service if the achievement or service is of a lesser degree than that deemed worthy of the Legion of Merit; but such service must have been accomplished with distinction.
Prior to Jan. 7, 2016, awards may be made to recognize single acts of merit or meritorious service. The lesser degree than that required for the award of the Legion of Merit must nevertheless have been meritorious and accomplished with distinction. The Bronze Star Medal may also be awarded for meritorious service under combat conditions that is of a lesser degree than that required for award of the Legion of Merit. However, for meritorious service that ended after Jan. 7, 2016, the Bronze Star Medal may only be awarded if during the period, the awardee was exposed to hostile action, or was at significant risk of exposure to hostile action. Otherwise, the appropriate award would be the Meritorious Service Medal.
Important to note is that 10 U.S. Code 1133 limits award of the Bronze Star Medal to servicemembers receiving imminent danger pay, hostile fire pay or hazardous duty pay and members of a friendly military force who are serving in a geographic area in which special pay is authorized under 37 USC 310 or 37 USC 351(a) (1) and (3) or special pay under any of the following circumstances: (a) while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States; (b) while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or (c) 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.
What is a Bronze Star Medal's criteria with the CIB?
U.S. Army personnel who, as members of the armed forces of the United States between Dec. 7, 1941 and Sept. 2, 1945, were awarded the Combat Infantry Badge (CIB) or Combat Medical Badge (CMB) may upon application receive the Bronze Star Medal. Although these World War II badges were not authorized for award until after July 1, 1943, those whose meritorious achievements in combat before that date can be confirmed in writing may also be eligible for the Bronze Star Medal.
Award may be made to each servicemember of the U.S. Army who, after Dec. 6, 1941, has been cited in orders or awarded a certificate for exemplary conduct in ground combat against an armed enemy between Dec. 7, 1941 and Sept. 2, 1945, inclusive, or whose meritorious achievement has been otherwise confirmed by documents executed prior to July 1, 1947. For this purpose, an award of the CIB or CMB is considered as a citation in orders. Award of the Bronze Star Medal from these documents will not negate the original award or the CIB or CMB.
Documents executed since Aug. 4, 1944 in connection with recommendations for the award of decorations of higher degree than the Bronze Star Medal will not be used as the basis for an award under this paragraph. Veterans and retirees may submit letter application to National Personnel Records Center (NPRC–MPR), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO 63138–1002. Soldiers who retired or were discharged after Oct. 1, 2002 and the primary next of kin of soldiers who died after Oct. 1, 2002 should send their letter application to Commander, U.S. Army Human Resources Command, (AHRC–PDP–A), 1600 Spearhead Division Avenue, Fort Knox, KY 40122–5408. The letter application should include documentary evidence, if possible.
Upon letter application, award of the Bronze Star Medal may be made to eligible soldiers who participated in the Philippine Islands Campaign between Dec. 7, 1941 to May 10, 1942. Performance of duty must have been on the island of Luzon or the Harbor Defenses in Corregidor and Bataan. Only soldiers who were assigned or attached to units that were awarded the Distinguished Unit Citation (redesignated as the Presidential Unit Citation) may be awarded this decoration. Letter application should be sent to National Personnel Records Center (NPRC–MPR), 1 Archives Drive, St. Louis, MO 63138–1002.
What is a Bronze Star Medal’s Description?
The medal, designed by the firm of Bailey, Banks and Biddle, is in the shape of a five-pointed star 1 1/2 inches from point to point. In its center is a smaller raised star. The small star is set on a raised 10-pointed figure, from which rays extend to the points of the outer star, giving the whole a sculptured effect. The reverse of the medal also has a raised center, with rays extending to the five points of the star. Inscribed on this are the words “Heroic or Meritorious Achievement,” encircling a blank space for the recipient’s name.
What is a Bronze Star Medal’s ribbon description?
The ribbon is predominately red, with a narrow blue center stripe flanked on either side by a narrow white stripe, and a narrow white stripe at the outer edge.
What is a Bronze Star Medal’s authorized devices?
The Bronze Star Medal devices are the oak leaf cluster and valor “V” device. The Bronze Star Medal will not be awarded with the “C” device. The “C” device is not authorized because the Bronze Star Medal is a combat related award and service or achievement under combat conditions is inherent to the medal.
What is a Bronze Star Medal’s criteria for a “V” device?
The "V" device is worn on decorations to denote valor, an act or acts of heroism by an individual above what is normally expected while engaged in direct combat with an enemy of the United States, or an opposing foreign or armed force, with exposure to enemy hostilities and personal risk.
When awarded for heroism, the Bronze Star Medal is annotated by a bronze “V” device (to designate valor). Only one “V” device will be worn on the medal or ribbon regardless of the number of times awarded.
What is a Bronze Star Medal’s criteria for oak leaf clusters?
No more than one Bronze Star Medal shall be awarded to any one person, but for each succeeding meritorious achievement or service justifying such an award an oak leaf cluster device may be awarded to be worn with the medal as prescribed by appropriate regulations.
What is the Bronze Star Medal’s criteria for posthumous presentation?
The Bronze Star Medal or device may be awarded posthumously and, when so awarded, may be presented to such representative of the deceased as may be deemed appropriate by the secretary of the department concerned.
What is a Bronze Star Medal downgraded to?
According to Army Regulation 600-8-22, if downgraded, a Bronze Star Medal recommendation will be downgraded to an Army Commendation Medal. This applies only to the U.S. Army.