The United States Military Service
Honorable Discharge Lapel Pin

Site Index

      • Example Display Recognition
      • Sample Pin
      • Applicable Military Branches
      • Issue Requirements
      • Issue Regulations
      • Common Myths about the Ruptured Duck and its nickname
      • Who May Apply
      • Administration Processing and Delivery
      • How To Apply For This Display Recognition and/or Lapel Pin
      • Mailing Address
      • Questions?
      • Discharge and Award Display Recognitions
      • Sample Lapel Pin



        A Recognition of Issue accompanies
        the Lapel Pin.

        Military Branches

        All Military Service branches, Active, Reserve and Guard are applicable:
        Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Navy

        Who May Apply

        • Veteran recipients
        • Active Duty recipients
        • Family Members of recipients
        • Estate Inheritors

        Issue Requirements

      • 1. Your Character of Discharge must be HONORABLE or UNDER HONORABLE CONDITIONS (no exceptions).
      • 2. You must submit ONE of the following documents displaying your discharge character as Honorable:
      • A photocopy of your DD-214 (post WW2)
      • OR a photocopy of WD AGO 53-55 (WW2), OR NA Form 13038.
      • OR a photocopy of your Discharge Recognition.
      • NOTICE

        This Display Recognition is available ONLY to authorized recipients who possess orders, or authorization form, or release documentation that confirms award eligibility. (See "Issue Requirements"). To obtain either a Display Medal or a Display Recognition for your authorized award you will be required to provide military-issued documentation authorizing your award. There are no exceptions.

        WARNING!
        You must NOT submit a military issued document or photocopy that:

        • has been altered in any way by you after
          the original's official issue
        • contains information or corrections or
          additions that you entered
        • lists awards or training you knowingly did not receive
        • contains highlighting, colorizing or other markings you entered

        Be advised that on request any knowingly fraudulent document sent by you will be released to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that may result in prosecution and/or fine/imprisonment.

        Email Questions, or Phone: 310-532-0634

        Personnel Branch
        Processing and Delivery

        Lapel Pin Size: 13/16"
        Cost: From $14.70 to $27.70 (U.S. delivery)

      • See the Application Form for the international shipping cost
      • How to Apply

        You may apply for your Lapel Pin using a...

      • Check Debit card (* Shipped within 1 week)
      • Charge card (* Shipped within 1 week)
      • Personal, Business, Bank or Cashiers Check ( Shipped in 6 weeks)
      • Money Order (* Shipped within 1 week)
      • (* Upon reception of required documentation)

        Complete and MAIL this APPLICATION FORM.

        LAPEL PIN APPLICATION FORM

        Mailing Address

        Records Chief (REC-AMW)
        The American War Library
        16907 Brighton Avenue
        Gardena CA 90247-5420

        Questions?

        Email: Ruptured Duck Inquiry

        Telephone: 1-310-532-0634

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        Issue Regulations

        All Armed Forces Honorable Service Lapel Button All Armed Forces


        Click for larger image

        Eligible Personnel: All Branches, All Eras for Honorable and Under Honorable Conditions discharge.

        The Honorable Discharge Lapel Pin ("The Ruptured Duck") is the official emblem of Honorable Discharge for all service branches of all eras. It replaces all previously issued Honorable Discharge lapel pins or buttons and is retroactive to the Revolutionary War. Honorably Discharged personnel of all four military service branches (and Coast Guard personnel during wartime assignment to the War Department, Navy Department or Department of Defense) are eligible. The Pin may be worn on civilian clothing. The Pin should be displayed among military medals in shadow boxes. See "Common Myths About The Ruptured Duck" for information about its name origin.

        GENERAL INFORMATION: The War Department adopted this honorable discharge emblem for wear on the uniform of all military personnel who are discharged or separated from the service under honorable conditions. The emblem will supercede all previously authorized Honorable Discharge emblems and devices. This pin will be worn as a badge of honor indicative of honest and faithful service while a member of the Armed Forces. At the time of honorable discharge or separation from the service, the emblem will be permanently affixed on the right breast of all the outer clothing centered immediately above the pocket with the long axis of the lozenge horizontal. Honorable Discharge status is awarded to personnel killed in action.

        DESCRIPTION: A gold color metal lapel button 7/16 inch in height and 5/8 inch in width, a dexter eagle with wings displayed perched within a ring which displays thirteen vertical stripes with a chief, the dexter wing of the eagle behind the ring, the sinister wing in front of the ring.

        Background: The lapel button may be worn only by a person who served honorably.

        War Department General Order No 13., dated 9 Jun 1925, authorized the wearing of the badge by individuals named and fully described by the design of the badge. It was also described in Regulations No 600-35, dated 31 Dec 1926, but was not illustrated in the Regulations until 10 Nov 1941.

        In a May 1943 the lapel button was described as being "all of blue plastic," and then on 28 Jul 1943 a change prescribed "all of gold plated plastic." NOTE: The lapel button was created and produced during a period when the War Production Board had issued a restrictive order prohibiting the use of metal for the manufacture of such purposes. Therefore, plastic was decided upon for substitution and because of quick production. Originally a blue design was produced. As the work proceeded it was evident that the design would not be discernable against a blue suit. Before the lapel button was furnished to any individual, action was taken to gold plate all buttons. The words "National Defense" were also dropped from the description in the changes.

        War Department Circulars 187 and 318, dated 19 Aug 1943 and 7 Dec 1943, respectively, provided for gratuitous issue of the button to personnel honorably discharged since 9 Sep 1939.

        In a directive dated 13 May 1944, the War Department General Staff authorized the Honorable Service Lapel Button to be manufactured in gold color metal or gold plated plastic.

        On 24 Nov 1947, the lapel button for service rendered prior to 8 Sep 1939, is rescinded the only the lapel button for service rendered since 8 Sep 1939, was valid.

        Honorable Discharge Emblem, khaki Honorable Discharge Emblem, Olive Drab
        Khaki Emblem    Olive Drab Emblem

        Description: A device of woven material consisting of a lozenge background 1 1/2 inches in height and 3 inches in width, long axis horizontal and the design of the lapel button for service since 8 Sep 1939 in golden yellow. The ring of the design is 1 inch in diameter. The background will be of olive drab for wear on the enlisted man's service coat the other woolen outer garments, and of khaki for wear on the summer shirt.

        Background: According to Circular No. 454 dated 29 Nov 1944, the War Department adopted an honorable discharge emblem for wear on the uniform of all military personnel who are discharged or separated from the service under honorable conditions. The emblem will be worn as a badge of honor indicative of honest and faithful service while a member of the Armed Forces. At the time of honorable discharge or separation from the service, the emblem will be permanently affixed on the right breast of all the outer clothing centered immediately above the pocket with the long axis of the lozenge horizontal.

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