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   Silver Star
Service: ALL
Instituted: 1932
Authorized: DOD 1348-33-M
Issuing Country: ( US ) - UNITED STATES
Silver Star
Back of Medal
 
Devices
Description:
  1. 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). 
  2. The Silver Star is 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 Distinguished Service Cross, must nevertheless have been performed with marked distinction. 
  3. The Silver Star traces its history back to the silver Citation Star. The Citation Star was authorized in 1918 as a gallantry award, and worn on the campaign ribbon associated with the gallantry. The Silver Star medal was approved in 1932 for heroism of a lesser degree than that required for the DSM, Navy Cross or AFC.


Background:
  1. The Citation Star was established as a result of an Act of Congress on July 9, 1918 (65th Congress, Sess II, Chapter 143, page 873) and was promulgated in War Department Bulletin No. 43 dated 1918. It was retroactive to include those cited for gallantry in action in previous campaigns back to the Spanish-American War. Per letter from General Jervey, Office of the Chief of Staff, dated February 26, 1926, is quoted in part: The Secretary of War directs as follows - The following is the amended version of paragraph 187 of Army Regulation: "No more than one Medal of Honor or one Distinguished Service Cross or one Distinguished Service Medal shall be issued to any one person, but for each succeeding or act sufficient to justify the award of a Medal of Honor or Distinguished Service Cross or Distinguished Service Medal, respectively, a bronze oak leaf cluster, shall be issued in lieu thereof. 
  2. On July 19, 1932, the Secretary of War approved the Silver Star medal to replace the Citation Star. This design placed the Citation Star on a bronze pendant suspended from the ribbon design. The star was no longer attached to a service or campaign ribbon. 
  3. Authorization for the Silver Star was placed into law by an Act of Congress for the Navy on August 7, 1942 and an Act of Congress for the Army on December 15, 1942. The primary reason for congressional authorization was the desire to award the medal to civilians as well as the Armed Forces. The current statutory authorization for the Silver Star Medal is Title 10, United States Code, Section 3746.