Humanitarian Service Medal
obtained from Army
Institute of Heraldry.
Humanitarian Service Medal was established by President Ford per
Executive Order 11965, dated 19 January 1977. The order provided for
award for participation in a military operation of a humanitarian
nature subsequent to 1 April 1975. The policy and award criteria for
the Humanitarian Service Medal was established by Department of Defense
Directive 1348.25, dated 23 June 1977.
medals were submitted to the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD)
for approval 18 April 1977 and the selected design was approved by OSD
on 10 May 1977. The design by Mr. Jay Morris, The Institute of
Heraldry, uses the outstretched hand with palm up as the international
symbol for aid and assistance. On the reverse, the oak sprig is
symbolic of strength imparted through a selfless mission to aid
mankind. The color purple in the ribbon stands for self-sacrifice,
white for regeneration and blue for universal friendship. In addition,
the two shades of blue are the colors used in the flags of OSD.
Humanitarian Service Medal is awarded to members of the Armed Forces
who distinguish themselves by meritorious direct participation in any
significant military act or operation of a humanitarian nature approved
by the Department of Defense. The medal is not awarded for
participation in domestic disturbances involving law enforcement, equal
rights to citizens, or protection of properties.
members must be on active duty at the time for direct participation. It
also includes service as a cadet at the US Military Academy. Members of
the National Guard are eligible provided, that use of active forces has
been authorized in the act or operation.
Service members must
have directly participated in the humanitarian act or operation within
the designated geographical area of operation and within specified time
limits. Specifically excluded from eligibility for this medal are
personnel or elements remaining at geographically separated military
A bronze star is
worn on the ribbon to indicate subsequent awards of the Humanitarian
operations for which the Humanitarian Service Medal may be awarded are
listed in DOD Manual 1348.33 (M)