Good Conduct Medal
Display Recognition

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      Military Branches

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

      Who May Apply

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

      Display Types

      You have four display types to choose from:
      Black & White (No Color)
      Heavy Bond Enclosure

      Heavy Bond Enclosure
      Colors: Regal, Black, Navy
      Trimmed in Appearance Gold

      Ready for Mantle or Shelf Display

      Issue Requirements
      You must submit:

    • A photocopy of your DD-214 (post WW2), OR WD AGO 53-55 (WW2), OR other military issued document clearly displaying your Good Conduct Medal award.
    • Contact The War Library if you do not have a DD-214, WD AGO, NAVPERS, NG or other Report of Separation: 1-310-532-0634.
    • 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

      Your photocopy must be mailed or faxed to the address below.
      You may NOT email a digitized copy.

      Personnel Branch
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      • How to Apply

        You may apply for your Display Recognition using a...

      • Check Debit card (* Shipped within 1 week)
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      • Money Order (* Shipped within 1 week)
      • (* Upon reception of required documentation)

        Complete and MAIL this APPLICATION FORM.
        Don't forget to include a Notarized copy of your DD-214 or other pre-arranged document(s).

        DISPLAY RECOGNITION and/or MEDAL APPLICATION FORM

        Mailing Address

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

        Questions?

        Email: Recognition Inquiry

        Telephone: 1-310-532-0634

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        Issue Regulations

        Army Good Conduct Medal

        Click Certificate for larger image

        Chapter 4, Army Regulation 600-8-22 (Military Awards) 25 February, 1995

        4-1. Intent

        The Army Good Conduct Medal (AGCM) was established by Executive Order 8809, 28 June 1941 and was amended by Executive Order 9323, 1943 and by Executive Order 10444, 10 April 1953. It is awarded for exemplary behavior, efficiency, and fidelity in active Federal military service. It is awarded on a selective basis to each soldier who distinguishes himself or herself from among his or her fellow soldiers by their exemplary conduct, efficiency, and fidelity throughout a specified period of continuous enlisted active Federal military service, as outlined in this chapter. There is no right or entitlement to the medal until the immediate commander has approved the award and the award has been announced in permanent orders. See glossary for definition of "active Federal military service."

        4-2. Personnel eligible

        a. Active Component enlisted soldiers.

        b. Active Guard Reserve (AGR) enlisted personnel serving on extended periods of active duty (other than for training) under title 10, U.S.C. are eligible for award of the AGCM for qualifying service beginning on or after 1 September 1982, provided no period of the service has been duplicated by the same period of service for which the soldier has been awarded the Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal.

        c. Retroactively to eligible Army of the United States (AUS) enlisted personnel.

        d. Other Army enlisted personnel as may be directed by the Secretary of the Army.

        4-3. Award approval authority

        Unit commanders are authorized to award the AGCM to enlisted personnel serving under their command jurisdiction who meet the established criteria. Send requests for award of the AGCM for former soldiers to the Commander, ARPERCEN, ATTN: DARP-PAS-EAW, 9700 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63132-5200. Requests for award of the AGCM for Army National Guard and Army Reserve members for periods of active duty based on qualifying prior active Federal military service (Regular Army and AUS) will be forwarded through normal command channels to the Commander, ARPERCEN, ATTN: DARP-PAS-EAW, 9700 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63132-5200. Separation transfer points will review the records of enlisted personnel being separated to determine whether they qualify for the AGCM. Where possible, make a reasonable effort to contact the unit commander before awarding the medal to qualified members.

        4-4. Basis for approval

        The immediate unit commander's decision to award the AGCM will be based on his or her personal knowledge and of the individual's official records for periods of service under previous commanders during the period for which the award is to be made. The lack of official disqualifying comment by such previous commanders qualifies the use of such period toward the award by current commander.

        4-5. Qualifying periods of service

        Any one of the following periods of continuous enlisted active Federal military service qualifies for award of the AGCM or of a AGCM Clasp (para 4-9) in conjunction with the criteria in para (4-6):

        a. Each 3 years completed on or after 27 August 1940.

        b. For first award only, 1 year served entirely during the period 7 December 1941 to 2 March 1946

        c. For first award only, upon termination of service on or after 27 June 1950, of less than 3 years but more than 1 year.

        d. For first award only, upon termination of service, on or after 27 June 1950, of less than 1 year when final separation was by reason of physical disability incurred in line of duty

        e. For first award only, for those individuals who died before completing 1 year of active Federal military service if the death occurred in the line of duty.

        4-6. Character of service

        Throughout a qualifying period, each enlisted soldier must meet all of the following criteria for an award:

        a. The immediate commander evaluates the soldier's character as above reproach.

        b. The record of service indicates that the soldier has:

        (1) Willingly complied with the demands of the military environment.

        (2) Been loyal and obedient to their superiors.

        (3) Faithfully supported the goals of their organization and the Army.

        (4) Conducted themselves in such an exemplary manner as to distinguish them.

        c. While any record of non-judicial punishment could be in conflict with recognizing the soldier's service as exemplary, such record should not he viewed as automatically disqualifying. The commander analyzes the record, giving consideration to the nature of the infraction, the circumstances under which it occurred and when. Conviction by court-martial terminates a period of qualifying service; a new period begins following the completion of sentence imposed by court-martial.

        d. In terms of job performance, the soldier's efficiency must be evaluated and must meet all requirements and expectations for that soldier's grade, MOS, and experience.

        e. Individuals whose retention is not warranted under standards prescribed in AR 604-10, paragraph 2-1, or for whom a bar to reenlistment has been approved under the provisions of AR 601-280, chapter 6 (specifically for the reasons enumerated in AR 601-280, paras 6-4a, b, and d), are not eligible for award of the AGCM.

        4-7. Additional implementing instructions

        a. Qualifying periods of service (para 4-5) must be continuous enlisted active Federal military service. When an interval in excess of 24 hours occurs between enlistments, that portion of service prior to the interruption is not creditable toward an award

        b. Release from enlisted status for entry into service as a cadet or midshipman at any U.S. service academy, or discharge from enlisted status for immediate entry on active duty in an officer status is considered termination of service for awarding the AGCM. A minimum of 12 months enlisted service is required and must have been completed for first award of the AGCM; otherwise, the full 3 years of qualifying enlisted service is required.

        c. A qualified person scheduled for separation from active Federal military service should receive the award at his or her last duty station. Such award is authorized up to 30 days before the soldier's departure en route to a separation processing installation in CONUS or overseas. Orders announcing such advance awards will indicate the closing date for the award prefixed with date of separation, on or about, as the response to the "Dates or period of service lead line. Example: from 31 Oct 1977 to date of separation on or about 30 Oct 1980. For soldiers who are granted terminal leave prior to retirement or ETS, orders awarding Second and subsequent awards of the AGCM may be issued up to 90 days before retirement or ETS date.

        d. An award made for any authorized period of less than 3 years must be for the total period of obligated active Federal military service. This applies to first award only, all other awards of the AGCM require 3 full years qualifying service

        e. Discharge under provisions of AR 635-200 for immediate (re)enlistment is not termination of service.

        4-8. Disqualification for the Army Good Conduct Medal

        a. Conviction by courts-martial terminates a period of qualifying service; a new period begins the following day after completion of the sentence imposed by the Court-Martial

        b. Individuals whose retention is not warranted under standards prescribed in AR 604-10, paragraph 2-1, or for whom a bar to reenlistment has been approved under the provisions of AR 601-280, chapter 6 specifically for the reasons enumerated in AR 601-280, paras 6-4a, b, and d), are not eligible for award of the AGCM.

        c. In instances of disqualification as determined by the unit commander, the commander will prepare a statement of the rationale for his or her decision. This statement will include the period of disqualification and will be referred to the individual according to AR 600-37, paragraph 3-6. The unit commander will consider the affected individuals statement. If the commander's decision remains the same, the commander will forward his or her statement, the individual's statement and his or her consideration for filing in the individuals DA Form 201 (Military Personnel Records Jacket) (MPRJ). The custodian of the MPRJ will forward these documents to Commander, U S. Army Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center, Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN 46249-5301, for permanent filing in the individual's OMPF.

        d. Disqualification for an award of the AGCM can occur at any time during a qualifying period (for example when manner of performance or efficiency declines). The custodian of the MPRJ will establish the new "beginning date" for the soldier's eligibility for award of the AGCM and indicate the date on the soldier's DA Form 2-l (Personnel Qualification Record, Part II). These procedures do not apply if soldier is disqualified under the provisions of a and b above.

        4-9. Subsequent awards and clasps

        A clasp is authorized for wear on the AGCM to denote a second or subsequent award. Clasps authorized for second and subsequent awards are in table 4-l.

        4-10. Army Good Conduct Medal recognition policy

        a. The DA Form 4950 (Good Conduct Medal Recognition) may be presented to enlisted soldiers only on the following occasions:

        (1) Concurrent with the first award of the AGCM earned on or after l January 1981.

        (2) Concurrent with retirement on or after l January 1981.

        b. When presented at retirement, the DA Form 4950 will reflect the last approved award of the AGCM earned by the soldier before retirement. The number of the last earned award will be centered immediately beneath the line "THE GOOD CONDUCT MEDAL" for example "Sixth Award." The period shown on the recognition will be the period cited in the last award earned by the soldier.

        c. The DA Form 4950 will not be presented for second or subsequent awards of the AGCM except as provided in (2) above.

        d. DA Form 4950 is available from the U.S. Army Publications Distribution Center, ATTN. SFIS-APC-BD, 2800 Eastern Boulevard, Baltimore, MD 21220-2896.

        4-11. Retroactive Award

        a. Retroactive award to enlisted personnel and to officer personnel who qualified in an enlisted status, is authorized provided evidence is available to establish qualification. Where necessary, to correct conflicting or duplicate awards, previous general or permanent orders may be revoked and new orders published, citing this paragraph as authority.

        b. Requests for retroactive awards to enlisted persons which cannot be processed due to lack of information will be forwarded to Commander, U.S. Army Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN 46249-5301, by the commander having command jurisdiction. Upon receipt of eligibility information from U.S. Army Enlisted Records and Evaluation Center (USAEREC), the commander can take action to confirm retroactive award of the AGCM by publication of orders, or by informing the soldier of findings of ineligibility.

        41. Army Good Conduct Medal l

        A. Authorized by Executive Order 8809, as amended (reference (eeee)). . b. Awarded on a selective basis to enlisted Service members of the Regular U.S. Army who distinguished themselves by exemplary behavior, efficiency, and fidelity throughout a specified period of continuous enlisted service. c. Good Conduct Medal Clasps are awarded and worn on the suspension and service ribbon of the Army Good Conduct Medal for second or subsequent awards of the medal. D-17

        1. Description: A bronze medal, 1 1/4 inches in diameter, with an eagle, wings spread, standing on a closed book and sword, encircled by the words "EFFICIENCY HONOR FIDELITY". On the reverse is a five-pointed star and a scroll between the words "FOR GOOD" and "CONDUCT", surrounded by a wreath formed by a laurel branch on the left and an oak branch on the right. Clasps are placed on the ribbon to represent subsequent awards.

        2. Ribbon: A 1 3/8 inches ribbon consisting of the following stripes: 1/16 inch Soldier Red 67157; 1/16 inch White 67101; 1/16 inch Soldier Red; 1/16 inch White; 1/16 inch Soldier Red; 1/16 inch White; center 5/8 inch Soldier Red; 1/16 inch White; 1/16 inch Soldier Red; 1/16 inch White; 1/16 inch Soldier Red; 1/16 inch White; and 1/16 inch Soldier Red.

        3. Criteria: a. The Good Conduct Medal is awarded for exemplary behavior, efficiency, and fidelity in active Federal Military service. It is awarded on a selective basis to each soldier who distinguishes himself from among his/her fellow soldiers by their exemplary conduct, efficiency, and fidelity throughout a specified period of continuous enlisted active Federal military service. Qualifying periods of service include each three years completed after 27 August 1940 or, for first award only, upon completion of at least one year upon termination of service if separated prior to three years. The immediate commander must approve the award and the award must be announced in permanent orders.

        b. Effective 1 September 1982, Active Guard Reserve personnel became eligible for award of the Good Conduct Medal. For Active Guard Reserve personnel, the Good Conduct Medal qualification period may commence at a time during the three years immediately preceding the 1 September 1982 effective date, provided no portion of service for the Good Conduct Medal is included in a period of service for which the Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal was awarded.

        4. Components: The following are authorized components:

        a. Medal (regular size): MIL-DTL-3943/191. NSN 8455-00-269-5761 for set which includes regular size medal and ribbon bar.

        b. Medal (miniature size): MIL-DTL-3943/191. Commercially available from certified manufacturers.

        c. Ribbon: MIL-DTL-11589/68. NSN 8455-00-257-0571. Commercially available from certified manufacturers.

        d. Lapel Button (metal replica of ribbon): MIL-DTL-11484/48. Commercially available from certified manufacturers.

        5. Background: a. The Good Conduct Medal was established by Executive Order 8809, dated 28 June 1941, and authorized the award for soldiers completing three years active service after that date. The criteria was amended by Executive Order 9323, dated 31 March 1943, to authorize award for three years service after 7 December 1941 or one year service while the United States is at war. Executive Order 10444, dated 10 April 1953, revised the criteria to authorize award for three years service after 27 August 1940; one year service after 7 December 1941 while the United States is at war; and award for the first award for service after 27 June 1950 upon termination of service, for periods less than three years, but more than one year.

        b. The medal was designed by Mr. Joseph Kiselewski and approved by the Secretary of War on 30 October 1942. The eagle, with wings spread, denotes vigilance and superiority. The horizontal sword denotes loyalty, and the book represents knowledge acquired and ability gained. On the reverse, the lone star denotes merit. The wreath of laurel and oak leaves denotes reward and strength.

        c. The second and subsequent awards are indicated by the wear of the clasp with loop on the ribbon. Bronze clasps indicate the second (two loops) through fifth award (five loops); silver clasps indicate sixth (one loop) through tenth award (five loops); and gold clasps indicate eleventh (one loop) through the fifteenth award (5 loops).

        1. Navy Good Conduct Medal

        Click Certificate for larger image

        BACKGROUND:

        The Navy Good Conduct Medal was established by SECNAV on 26 April 1869 to recognize the "all-around" good Navy enlisted person, well qualified in all phases of conduct and performance. Effective 1 February 1971, commanding officers were delegated authority to award the Navy Good Conduct Medal and certificates. The CNO has review authority over the GCM and designates specific criteria for the award.

        CRITERIA:

        (a) Service. After 1 November 1963 any 4 years of continuous active service as an enlisted person in the Regular Navy or Naval Reserve. Per NAVADMIN 305/95, After 1 January 1996, the qualifying period of eligibility is 3 years vice 4 years for service terminating after that date. For first enlistments this requirement may be fulfilled by:

        1. Continuous active service during a minority enlistment provided the member concerned served on active duty to the day preceding his/her 21st birthday even though he/she extended the enlistment and remained on active duty; or

        2. Continuous active service during a minority enlistment provided the member concerned served on active duty within 3 months of the day preceding his/her 21st birthday; or

        3. Continuous active service during a first enlistment for 4 years from which the member concerned has been discharged or released to inactive duty within 3 months of the date of expiration of enlistment. (This does not apply to those members who are discharged for the purpose of immediate reenlistment.)

        4. Per NAVADMIN 320/95, any continuous 3 years or more of qualifying service ending on or after 1 January 1996 warrants entitlement to subject medals. Retroactive computation or other changes to existing criteria is not authorized. (Ex: An individual with 3 years 11 months of qualifying service would be eligible to receive the award on 1 January 1996 and again 1 January 1999 if qualifications are met. However, an individual with 2 years 6 months of qualifying service on 1 January 1996, would not eligible for the award until a full 3 years of service has been completed on 1 July 1996.) Additionally, this change does not affect the requirements for service stripes, as dictated by reference (b), Articles 4231 and 4232.

        (b) Conduct

        1. Within the required period of active service, the individual must have a clear record (no convictions by courts-martial, no non-judicial punishments (NJP), no lost time by reason of sickness-misconduct, no civil convictions for offenses involving moral turpitude).

        a. If confinement as result of conviction by any courts-martial (general, special or summary) is involved, a new 3-year period shall begin with date of restoration to duty on a probationary basis. If confinement is not included in approved sentence of the courts-martial, a new 3-year period shall begin with date of convening authority action.

        b. If the service record contains an NJP, a new 3-year period shall begin with the date following the date of the offense. However, when the date of the offense cannot be determined, the new 3-year period shall begin with the date following the NJP.

        c. If convicted by civil authorities for an offense involving moral turpitude, a new 3-year period shall begin with date of return to active duty status.

        d. If the record contains a disqualifying mark which is not the result of an NJP, the new 3-year period shall begin with the next date following the date of the mark.

        (c) Performance marks required during period of eligibility.

        1. Subsequent to 1 January 1996, no mark below 2.0 in any trait.

        2. Between to 31 August 1983 and 31 December 1995 no mark below 3.0 in Military Knowledge/Performance, Rating Knowledge/Performance, Reliability, Military Bearing, Personal Behavior and Directing.

        3. Prior to 31 August 1983.

        a. E-4 and below. No mark below 3.0 in any trait.

        b. E-5 and E-6. No Mark below EEL (Typically Effective-Lower) in Directing, Individual Productivity, Reliability or Conduct.

        c. E-7 to E-9. No Mark below the bottom 50 percent in Performance, Reliability, Conduct or Directing. If an individual receives a disqualifying trait mark, a new period of eligibility would begin on the day following the ending date of the performance evaluation report which contains the disqualifying trait mark.

        (3) Subsequent to 17 May 1974, for the first award only, the Good Conduct Medal may be awarded in the following cases provided conduct and performance requirements are met:

        (a) For those individuals who are killed in combat action against an opposing armed force, or die as a direct result of wounds received in combat action against an opposing armed force, the award may be presented posthumously to the next of kin.

        (b) For those individuals who are separated from the naval service for physical disability as a result of wounds incurred in combat action against an opposing armed force, or in the line of duty where such wounds were directly related to action against the enemy.

        (c) For those individuals who die while in a Prisoner of War (POW) status, the Navy Good Conduct Medal may be presented posthumously to the next of kin, provided it has been determined that conduct while in a POW status was acceptable.

        (4) A certificate shall be prepared for each award. The member's rate, name, branch of service and number of the award shall be centered in the appropriate spaces. The ending date of the period of service for which the award was earned shall be centered after "Awarded for service completed on." The commanding officer's name, rank and branch of service shall be typed above "Commanding Officer" and his/her signature affixed.

        DESCRIPTION:

        On a bronze medal, 1 3/8 inches in diameter. The inscription on the front says "United States Navy" around the outer boarder of the medal w/a ship in the center of the medal and a anchor through the middle in the background.

        ORDER OF PRECEDENCE

        The Navy Good Conduct Medal is worn after the Prisoner of War Medal and before the Naval Reserve Meritorious Service Medal.

        DEVICES

        Subsequent awards of the Navy Good Conduct Medal are denoted by stars three-sixteenths of an inch in diameter. Bronze stars denote individual subsequent awards; silver stars denotes five bronze stars.

        DESIGNER

        The design of the current Navy Good Conduct Medal is based on the design of the transitional Good Conduct Medal which was designed by Commodore Winfield Scott Schley. Schley's design was based on the Navy logo then in use on certain documents, which itself bore a striking resemblance to the reverse design of Great Britain's Royal Navy Long Service and Good Conduct Medal.

        DESCRIPTION AND SYMBOLISM

        Obverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, a sailing ship in full rigging is shown sailing to the right. Beneath the ship is the word CONSTITUTION. The ship and inscription are contained within a circle of rope tied at the base. The scene is superimposed over an anchor, with its stock appearing above and its flukes below. The anchor's chain forms a circle between the rope and the edge of the medal. Within the circles formed by the rope and chain are the words UNITED< (on the left) STATES (on the right) and NAVY (across the lower part of the anchor).

        The ship is the Constitution, one of six frigates authorized by Act of Congress on March 27, 1794. Launched on October 21, 1797, the Constitution was a "ship of beauty, power, and speed ... fashioned as a national expression of growing naval interest, and a symbol auguring the dedication, courage, and achievement of the American fighting men and ships." The Constitution thus represents the American naval tradition. The cable, anchor, and chain are nautical symbols further referring to naval service.

        Reverse

        The center of the reverse is blank for inscribing the recipient's name. The word FIDELITY appears on the inside contour on the left; the word OBEDIENCE on the right, and ZEAL at the base. These words are taken from the original Good Conduct Medal and represent the virtues recognized by the medal.

        Ribbon

        The ribbon to the Navy Good Conduct Medal is red and is based on the red stripe in the original three-colored ribbon; it was darkened to avoid its being confused with the ribbon of the Specially Meritorious Service Medal, 1898, which is a brighter shade of red.


        2. Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal

        Click Certificate for larger image

        A. Established by the Secretary of the Navy, July 20, 1896. b. Awarded on a selective basis to recognize 3 years of continuous active duty to enlisted Service members in the Regular U.S. Marine Corps or U.S. Marine Corps Reserve to recognize good behavior and faithful service in the U.S. Marine Corps. c. A bronze star shall be worn on the suspension and service ribbon of the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal for subsequent awards of the medal.

        Establishing Authority

        The Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal was established by Secretary of the Navy H.A. Herbert and was implemented by Navy Department Special Orders Number 49 of July 20, 1896.

        Effective Dates

        The Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal has been awarded for qualifying service from July 20, 1896 to the present.

        Criteria

        The Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal is awarded on a selective basis to enlisted members in the Regular Marine Corps or Marine Corps Reserve to recognize good behavior and faithful service in the U.S. Marine Corps while on active duty for a specified period of time.

        Order of Precedence

        The Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal is worn after the Prisoner of War Medal and before the Selected Marine Corps Reserve Medal.

        Devices

        Suspender

        The ribbon was originally suspended from a clasp with rounded ends bearing the words U.S. MARINE CORPS. This clasp was eliminated because it could not be worn on the medal when it was bar-mounted with other medals for formal wear.

        Enlistment Bars

        The order creating the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal also provided that a bar "of appropriate design" would be issued in lieu of additional medals. These bars were engraved on the front with the number of the recipient's most recent enlistment and on the reverse with the dates of the enlistment. Enlistment bars were discontinued on January 4, 1953.

        Numerals

        In the early years of this century additional awards of the Good Conduct Medal were noted on the ribbon bar worn on the uniform by the use of bronze numerals. These numerals were replaced by bronze stars in 1946.

        Stars

        From January 4, 1953 to the present bronze stars three-sixteenths of an inch in diameter have been used on both the Good Conduct Medal and its ribbon bar to denote additional awards.

        First Award

        The first Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal was awarded to Sergeant Friedrick Barchewitz.

        Designer

        The Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal was designed by Major General Charles Heywood (USMC)

        Description and Symbolism

        Obverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, a Marine gunner is depicted serving a naval gun. This scene is encircled within a rope, and beneath it is a scroll bearing the motto SEMPER FIDELIS. Encircling the rope are the words UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS. The whole scene rests upon a foul anchor with its crown tilted to the right. The encircling anchor chain is within the raised rim of the medal. The medal is suspended from a bolt action rifle.

        The general theme of the design is taken from the Navy Good Conduct Medal, modified to make it more appropriate for the Marine Corps. Thus, the Constitution in the Navy Medal is replaced by a Marine is dressed in the period of the Civil War; his servicing a naval gun alludes to the role played by Marines aboard warships. The motto SEMPER FIDELIS (Always Faithful) is the official motto of the Marine Corps. The rifle suspender is the Lee Navy rifle, a high velocity magazine fed bolt action rifle that used .236 ammunition. The rope, anchor, and chain are nautical symbols that refer to naval service.

        Reverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, there is a blank space for the engraving of the recipient's name. Around the inside rim of the medal, the words FIDELITY (on the left); OBEDIENCE (on the right), and ZEAL (at the bottom).

        Ribbon

        The ribbon to the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal consists of a field of dark red bisected by a stripe of dark blue. The dark red is taken from the Navy Good Conduct Medal and the blue central stripe, which represents the Marine Corps, is added to distinguish the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal from the Navy Good Conduct Medal.

        Numbering

        Marine Corps Good Conduct Medals were numbered from their inception up to (and including part of) World War II. The style and placement of the numbering varied over time but for most of this period the number was engraved as part of the naming of the medal. A major exception to this was a group of 50,000 medals rim numbered in the 20000 to 70000 range. These medals were issued to Marines who had enlisted for the duration of the First World War and were issued unnamed. USMC Good Conduct Medals were also named from their inception to 1951, when the practice was discontinued. The style of naming has varied over the years and ranges from elaborate and artistic engraving in the early years to simple impressed naming in the later years.

        28. Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal

        Click Certificate for larger image

        A. Authorized by the Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard, May 18, 1921. b. Awarded on a selective basis to enlisted Service members in the Regular U.S. Coast Guard or the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve who have been recommended by their commanding officer or district superintendent for proficiency in rating, sobriety, obedience, industry, courage, and neatness throughout a specified period of Service. c. Bronze service stars are awarded and worn on the suspension and service ribbon of the Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal for second or subsequent awards of the medal.

        A. Initially established as the "Coast Guard Reserve Meritorious Service Ribbon" on February 1, 1963, by the Commandant, U.S. Coast Guard. Renamed the "Coast Guard Reserve Good Conduct Medal," September 3, 1981. b. Awarded on a selective basis to Coast Guard enlisted Reservists on inactive duty who fulfill with distinction the obligations of inactive Reservists, such as excellent attendance at drills, proficiency in rate, and development of leadership qualities for a 3-year period. c. A bronze service star is awarded and worn on the Service ribbon and suspension ribbon of the Coast Guard Reserve Good Conduct Medal to denote second and subsequent awards of the medal.

        The Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal was established by Rear Admiral William F. Reynolds, Commandant of the Coast Guard, on May 18, 1921.

        Effective Dates

        The Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal has been awarded for qualifying service to enlisted members of the Coast Guard from May 17, 1920, to the present.

        Criteria

        The Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal is awarded on a selective basis to enlisted members in the Regular Coast Guard or the Coast Guard Reserve for proficiency in rating, sobriety, obedience, industry, courage and neatness throughout a specified period of active military service (from May 17, 1920, to June 30, 1934, and from November 1, 1963, to December 31, 1979, the period of service was four years; for all other periods, including the present, it is three years).

        Order of Precedence

        The Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal is worn after the Prisoner of War Medal and before the Coast Guard Reserve Good Conduct Medal.

        Devices

        Bars

        Subsequent entitlements were originally indicated by bars engraved in the same fashion as Navy Good Conduct Medal bars.

        Bronze Stars

        Bronze stars have been authorized for subsequent awards of the Good Conduct Medal made after January 1, 1966.

        Designer

        The design of the Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal is based on the design of the Navy Good Conduct Medal, modified to reflect Coast Guard service.

        Description and Symbolism

        Obverse

        First Style

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a half inches in diameter, a ship is depicted sailing on water and is contained within a circle formed by a rope which is tied in the six o'clock position. Beneath the rope and ship are crossed oars, and forming a circle around the rope and the edge of the medal, a circle of chain. Between the circle of rope and chain, the words SEMPER PARATUS.

        The ship is the Tampa, a Coast Guard cutter sunk on September 26, 1918, by a German submarine. All hands on the Tampa were lost. The Tampa thus represents the ultimate in "fidelity, zeal, and obedience." The oars represent the United States Lifesaving Service, which merged with the Revenue Cutter Service in 1915 to form the United States Coast Guard. The chain and rope are nautical devices that allude to sea service, while the words SEMPER PARATUS and mean "always ready," which is the motto of the Coast Guard. The ribbon hangs from a squared bronze pinbar with the words U.S. COAST GUARD in the center, and the medal is connected to the ribbon by a straight suspension bar.

        Second Style

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, the Coast Guard seal is shown within a circle of rope. Beneath the seal and rope are crossed oars, and forming a circle around the rope and the edge of the medal, a circle of chain. Between the circle of rope and chain, the words SEMPER PARATUS.

        The seal designates this medal as a Coast Guard award while the anchor chain and rope are nautical devices that allude to sea service. The Latin words SEMPER PARATUS mean "always ready," the motto of the Coast Guard. This version was approved in 1961 and first awarded in 1963.

        Reverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, a blank space is left for engraving the recipient's name inside a circle of rope. Forming a circle around the rope and following the contour of the medal, the words FIDELITY ZEAL OBEDIENCE. The rope is a symbol of sea service and the inscription identifies the qualities recognized by this medal. NOTE: This reverse was also used on the first type Good Conduct Medal.

        Ribbon

        The ribbon to the Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal is Red with a white stripe in the center. This is the same ribbon as the one used by the Navy, with a white stripe to distinguish it as the Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal.

        U.S. Coast Guard

        Reserve Good Conduct Medal

        The Coast Guard Reserve Good Conduct Medal was established on February 1, 1963. It is given to enlisted members of the active reserve in recognition of superior performance of duty during a three year period of service.

        63. Air Force Good Conduct Medal

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        A. Authorized by the Secretary of the Air Force, June 1, 1963.
        B. Awarded to enlisted Service members of the U.S. Air Force for exemplary conduct during a 3-year period of military service while in the active Military Service of the United States. Successive awards are denoted by oak-leaf clusters worn on the suspension and service ribbon of the medal. 64. Air Reserve Forces Meritorious Service Medal
        C. The Air Force Good Conduct medal is retroactive to post 1947 Air Force members who received the Army Good Conduct medal

        A. Authorized by the Secretary of the Air Force, April 1, 1964, as amended May 1, 1973. B. Awarded for exemplary behavior, efficiency, and fidelity during a 4-year period while serving in an enlisted status in the U.S. Air Reserve Forces. Subsequent awards shall be denoted by an oak-leaf cluster worn on the suspension and Service ribbon of the medal. 65. Naval Reserve Meritorious Service Medal . a. Established by the Secretary of the Navy, June 22, 1964. b. Awarded on a selective basis to U.S. Navy Reservists who, during any three consecutive years subsequent to July 1, 1958, fulfill with distinction the obligations of inactive Reservists. c. A bronze star is worn on the suspension and service ribbon of the Naval Reserve Meritorious Service Medal to denote subsequent awards. D-26

        *

        The Air Force Good Conduct Medal derives from the authority establishing the Army Good Conduct Medal; the Air Force version was authorized by Secretary of the Air Force Eugene M. Zuckert on June 1, 1963.

        Effective Dates

        The Air Force Good Conduct Medal has been awarded for qualifying service from May 31, 1963 to the present.

        Criteria

        The Air Force Good Conduct Medal is awarded to active duty enlisted members of the Air Force for exemplary conduct during a specified period of military service (normally three years in peacetime).

        Order of Precedence

        The Air Force Good Conduct Medal is worn after the Combat Readiness Medal and before the Air Reserve Forces Meritorious Service Medal.

        Devices

        Additional awards of the Air Force Good Conduct Medal are indicated by oak leaf clusters.

        Designer

        The Air Force Good Conduct Medal was designed by Joseph Kiselewski as the Army Good Conduct Medal. The Air Force Good Conduct Medal differs from the Army Good Conduct Medal only in the design of its ribbon.

        Description and Symbolism

        Obverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, an eagle is shown with its wings displayed while standing on a closed book and Roman sword, encircled by the words EFFICIENCY HONOR FIDELITY.

        The eagle is the American bald eagle and represents the United States. The closed book and Roman sword allude to military strength through training and knowledge. The inscription describes the virtues which this medal seeks to reward.

        Reverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, there is a five-pointed star and scroll between the words FOR GOOD CONDUCT, surrounded by a wreath formed by a laurel branch on the left and an oak branch on the right.

        The five-pointed star is taken from the Union of the Nation's flag and represents each State and all of them collectively and is also the symbol of military service. The scroll is provided for inscription of the recipient's name. The laurel branch is symbolic of achievement and the oak branch represents both strength and courage.

        Ribbon

        The ribbon to the Air Force Good Conduct Medal consists of a field of light blue with red, white and blue pinstripes just inside each edge of the ribbon. The red, white and blue pinstripes are the National colors, while the light blue background represents the sky, the operational medium of the Air Force. Coast Guard Good Conduct Medal

        The Navy Good Conduct Medal.

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        The Navy GCM is awarded on a selective basis to recognize four years of continuous active duty, above average conduct and proficiency by enlisted service members in the regular Navy or U.S. Naval Reserve.

        Order of Precedence

        The Navy Good Conduct Medal is worn after the Prisoner of War Medal and before the Naval Reserve Meritorious Service Medal.

        Devices

        Subsequent awards of the Navy Good Conduct Medal are denoted by stars three-sixteenths of an inch in diameter. Bronze stars denote individual subsequent awards; silver stars denotes five bronze stars.

        Designer

        The design of the current Navy Good Conduct Medal is based on the design of the transitional Good Conduct Medal which was designed by Commodore Winfield Scott Schley. Schley's design was based on the Navy logo then in use on certain documents, which itself bore a striking resemblance to the reverse design of Great Britain's Royal Navy Long Service and Good Conduct Medal.

        Description and Symbolism

        Obverse

        In the center of a bronze medallion one and a quarter inches in diameter, a sailing ship in full rigging is shown sailing to the right. Beneath the ship is the word CONSTITUTION. The ship and inscription are contained within a circle of rope tied at the base. The scene is superimposed over an anchor, with its stock appearing above and its flukes below. The anchor's chain forms a circle between the rope and the edge of the medal. Within the circles formed by the rope and chain are the words UNITED (on the left) STATES (on the right) and NAVY (across the lower part of the anchor).

        The ship is the Constitution, one of six frigates authorized by Act of Congress on March 27, 1794. Launched on October 21, 1797, the Constitution was a "ship of beauty, power, and speed ... fashioned as a national expression of growing naval interest, and a symbol auguring the dedication, courage, and achievement of the American fighting men and ships." The Constitution thus represents the American naval tradition. The cable, anchor, and chain are nautical symbols further referring to naval service.

        Reverse

        The center of the reverse is blank for inscribing the recipient's name. The word FIDELITY appears on the inside contour on the left; the word OBEDIENCE on the right, and ZEAL at the base. These words are taken from the original Good Conduct Medal and represent the virtues recognized by the medal.

        Ribbon

        The ribbon to the Navy Good Conduct Medal is red and is based on the red stripe in the original three-colored ribbon; it was darkened to avoid its being confused with the ribbon of the Specially Meritorious Service Medal, 1898, which is a brighter shade of red.