Military Times NOW hosts the HomeOfHeroes  Awards & Citations Database

 

Stories of American Heroes - Brought to you from the "Home of Heroes" - Pueblo, Colorado

 

The Military Valor

Roll Of Honor


  Medals Earned by Jim Stockdale (USN)  

Military medals are not "WON" -- they are "EARNED"...often at the cost of serious injury or even one's life. That is why those who have received the Medal of Honor, or any other award, prefer to be called "Recipients" rather than "Winners." Try telling a veteran with no legs that he WON a Purple Heart and most likely he will tell you it was a poor trade in which he LOST! On the other hand however, if in the action that cost that veteran his legs his performance SAVED the life of a comrade, earning him perhaps a Silver Star, most likely he will tell you it was WORTH IT...not to earn a medal, but simply to trade his legs for the life of a buddy.

The ribbons and/or suspension medals worn on the uniform of a member of the U.S. Armed Services, or on the civilian attire of a veteran, represent chapters in the history of military service. Behind each award is a story, usually spelled out briefly in a General Order or citation, which may in turn become the inspiration for further research that occasionally yields feature stories, documentaries, and even movies. In EVERY case those stories can and should be a source of personal self-satisfaction in a job well-done, and a family legacy to be passed on from generation to generation, long beyond the life of a military "hero."

Our Military's FIRST medal was the Badge for Military Merit, established by General George Washington during the American Revolution and presented only three times. During the American Civil War the Medal of Honor was established and presented nearly 3,000 times before World War I. Other than the now obsolete Certificate of Merit and Marine Corps Brevet Medal, it was the only award available in the U.S. Military, and in the Navy and Marine Corps it could only be presented to ENLISTED sailors and Marines.

Two problems marked the early days of the Medal of Honor: 
              1) As the ONLY medal available, it was Medal of Honor or NOTHING! and,
           2) For that very reason, in some cases that merited some level of recognition, it was awarded frivolously.

In 1917 a review was made of Medal of Honor awards with the revocation of 911 deemed to have been awarded without proper merit. At the same time, to recognize deeds of lesser heroism than what was required for the Medal of Honor, as well as to recognize distinguished service and/or achievement that was laudable but not necessarily heroic, a series of "lesser awards" in descending orders of precedence were established in the MILITARY PYRAMID OF HONOR. This has evolved and expanded over the years into what is now an impressive array of colorful and distinguished military decorations.

Major Individual Awards

Medal of Honor
Army - Navy
Air Force

Brevet Medal -Certificate of Merit
(Both Obsolete)

Service Crosses
DSC - Navy Cross - AF Cross

Distinguished Service Medals
DoD - Army - Navy - USAF - USCG

Silver Star - DoD Superior Service
Legion of Merit - Dist. Flying Cross

Non-Combat Heroism
Soldier's - Navy/Marine - Airman's'

Bronze Star - Purple Heart

In addition to the above, there are other individual awards including Meritorious Service Medals, the Air Medal, Commendation Medals (Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard), Achievement Medals, Prisoner of War Medal, and Good Conduct Medals. 

Following the Individual awards are various Service and Campaign medals that are a resume of service in various wars and theaters of action:

Service & Campaign
Medals/Ribbons


.

When the Pyramid of Honor was established in 1917-18, a special pension was authorized for the living recipients of the Medal of Honor, and to insure the integrity of those payments, based upon War Department General Orders and U.S. Navy Department citations, a Roll of Honor was established to list for the pension rolls and for posterity, the name of every man and woman awarded our highest military medal. Subsequently authorized awards of lesser medals were also published under General Orders and Navy Serial Letters and issued with certificates and citations, but no complete listing of recipients was required, or subsequently compiled. (The one exception to this was a volumous book published by the War Department in 1926, and five supplements from 1926 - 1941, with the names and citations for all awards from the Civil War until the beginning of World War II.)

Using a variety of records, I have attempted to compile and preserve for history, the names and citations for every man and woman awarded any of the top FOUR levels of military awards, the MOH, the Service Crosses, the Distinguished Service Medals, and the Silver Star. These comprise the accounts of heroism by more than 100,000 American soldiers, sailors, Marines, airmen, Coast Guardsmen, Merchant Marines, and a few distinguished American civilians.

 

Below are links to the names of those who have received some of our highest awards. For individual citations and detailed indexes, see our expanded MEMBER Library.

MEMBER LIBRARY

How to Become A Member

Public Access Links

Honor Roll of America's Most Decorated Military Heroes


Medal of Honor


USMC Brevet Medal


DSC 


Navy Cross 


Air Force Cross 

Distinguished Service Medals

Defense - Army - Navy - Air Force - Coast Guard - Merchant Marine


Silver Star

How to obtain a Missing Citation or ADD information to this Database

Links to Other Pages at HomeOfHeroes.com

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FEATURE STORIES
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RECIPIENT WEB SITES
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Medal Of Honor Calendar  |  Books By MOH RecipientsSteve Ryan MOH Posters

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FOOTNOTES
In
HISTORY

NEW
Looking for a Hero or trying to verify awards? We have posted the names of more than 120,000 recipients of the highest awards in a BRAND NEW FREE SECTION
DECORATIONS 1862 - Present
.

Military Medals & Awards 

Information and Images of ALL Military Medals
The Purple Heart 
How to Request Records/Medals Earned
  How to Obtain Military Records of a Family Member 

Honor Roll of America's Military Heroes


Brevet Medal


DSC 


Navy Cross 


Air Force Cross 

Distinguished Service Medals

Defense - Army - Navy - Air Force - Coast Guard - Merchant Marine



Silver Star

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