Service: All Services
Instituted: 1926 (retroactive to 6 April 1917)
Criteria: Heroism or extraordinary achievement while participating in aerial flight
Devices: Army/Air Force: Bronze, Silver Oak Leaf Cluster; Bronze Letter “V” (Air Force), Navy/Marine Corps: Bronze Letter “V” (for valor), Gold, Silver Star; Coast Guard: Gold, Silver Star
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Authorized on July 2, 1926 and implemented by an executive order signed by President Calvin Coolidge on January 28, 1927. It is awarded to United States military personnel for heroism or extraordinary achievement that is clearly distinctive involving operations during aerial flight that are not routine.
It is the first decoration authorized in identical design and ribbon to all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.