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   Bronze Star
Service: ALL
Instituted: 1944
Authorized: DOD 1348-33-M
Issuing Country: ( US ) - UNITED STATES
Bronze Star
Back of Medal
 
Devices
Description:
  1. Authorized by Executive Order 9419, “Bronze Star Medal,” February 4, 1944, superseded by Executive Order 11046
  2. Awarded to any person who, after December 6, 1941, while serving in any capacity with the Armed Forces of the United States, distinguishes himself or herself by heroic or meritorious achievement or service, not involving participation in aerial flight, under any of the following circumstances:
  • While engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States.
  • While engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force.
  • 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.
  1. When the Bronze Star is awarded for heroism, a bronze letter “V” (for valor) is worn on the suspension and service ribbon of that medal.


Background:
  1. General George C. Marshall, in a memorandum to President Roosevelt dated February 3, 1944, wrote: "The fact that the ground troops, Infantry in particular, lead miserable lives of extreme discomfort and are the ones who must close in personal combat with the enemy, makes the maintenance of their morale of great importance. The award of the Air Medal have had an adverse reaction on the ground troops, particularly the Infantry Riflemen who are now suffering the heaviest losses, air or ground, in the Army, and enduring the greatest hardships." The Air Medal had been adopted two years earlier to raise airmen’s morale.
  2. President Roosevelt authorized the Bronze Star Medal by Executive Order 9419 dated 4 February 1944, retroactive to 7 December 1941. This authorization was announced in War Department Bulletin No. 3, dated 10 February 1944. The Executive Order was amended by President Kennedy, per Executive Order 11046 dated 24 August 1962, to expand the authorization to include those serving with friendly forces.
  3. As a result of a study conducted in 1947, the policy was implemented that authorized the retroactive award of the Bronze Star Medal to soldiers who had received the Combat Infantryman Badge or the Combat Medical Badge during World War II. The basis for doing this was that the badges were awarded only to soldiers who had borne the hardships which resulted in General Marshall’s support of the Bronze Star Medal. Both badges required a recommendation by the commander and a citation in orders.