Serving in the military is something that requires a large amount of physical and mental fortitude. Those who excel in their performance are rewarded with certain commemorations. Understanding the top three US military awards is crucial, as it will help establish a certain level of respect for those who have them.
Let’s explore the ones that sit atop the military awards chart.
1. Medal of Honor
This is the highest military award that can be given to a member of the US armed forces.
It is awarded for acts of valor and it often goes to those who give their life in order to protect another. There are several requirements that must be met in order to be eligible to receive the Medal of Honor.
First, you must have engaged the enemy and showed gallantry in action, which means daring or bravery against armed opposition. The act should also occur during one specific event.
If multiple acts could be attributed to one soldier, then they must all occur during one event. The medal can be awarded posthumously, but there must still be evidence of the above requirements.
2. Distinguished Service Cross
This is a military award that can be presented to any person who has served in the US military. In order to receive this award, you must have performed a deed of bravery or valor above and beyond the call of duty.
This usually means going beyond normal expectations to save a life, or risking your own in order to protect another person. The Distinguished Service Cross is considered the second closest award to the Medal of Honor. Regulations impose that no one can receive both this award and the Medal of Honor for the same act. However, there are several recent exceptions to that rule.
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3. Silver Star
The third-highest military award is the Silver Star and it has a wide range of eligibility requirements.
However, this medal must be earned in combat. This means that you cannot simply go on patrol and receive it. It is often awarded for gallantry in action, but not always.
The Silver Star has gone through some changes over the years. Between 1918 until 1932 it could be awarded to anyone who showed extraordinary heroism during battle, regardless of whether or not they were involved in combat directly. It was during that time that the Silver Star earned its nickname, “the Soldier’s Cross.”
The Top Three Military Awards Should Be Held in High Esteem
They require a large amount of valor and sacrifice in order to obtain. In many cases, the life of the soldier will never be the same as it was before they receive the award.
So, anyone who has one of these military awards should always be treated with the utmost respect.
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