Silver Star Medal


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The Silver Star medal is the third highest among the prestigious decorations in the military awards to acknowledge gallantry. It is awarded when the U.S. Army is not the aggressor while working with an ally against an opposing force. The Silver Star (SS) Medal is made of gold and has the shape of a five-pointed star with a smaller five-pointed silver star at the center circled by a laurel wreath.

  • Type:

    Personal Valor Decoration

  • Awarded for:

    Gallantry in action against an enemy of the United States

  • Presented by:

    United States Department of the Army, United States Department of the Navy, United States Department of the Air Force ,United States Department of Homeland Security

  • Eligibility:

    United States Armed Forces personnel, foreign allied personnel and civilians serving alongside U.S. military personnel in combat

  • Status:

    Currently awarded

  • Established:

    9 July 1918: Army Citation Star (SS) (Retroactive to 15 April 1861)
    19 July 1932: Silver Star Medal
    7 August 1942: Navy, SSM (Retroactive to 6 December 1941)
    16 December 1942: Army, SS (Retroactive to 6 December 1941)

  • First awarded:

    August 1932 (WWI Army Silver Star conversion)