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a. Authorization. E.O. 11231 of 8 July 1965.

b. Vietnam Service Medal Eligibility Requirements

(1) General

(a) Vietnam Service Medal is awarded to all members of the Armed Forces of the United States, serving at any time between 4 July 1965 and 28 March 1973, in the area defined under the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (AFEM) for Vietnam.

(b) Vietnam Service Medal is awarded to all members of the Armed Forces of the United States in Thailand, Laos, or Cambodia or the air space thereof, between 4 July 1965 and 28 March 1973, and serving in direct support of operations in Vietnam.

(c) Members qualified for the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (AFEM), by reason of service between 1 July 1958 and 3 July 1965, inclusive, in an area for which the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) was subsequently authorized, shall remain qualified for the Armed Forces Expeditioanry Medal (AFEM). Upon application, any such member may elect the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) in lieu of the Armed Forces Expeditioanry Medal (AFEM) for such service. However, no person shall be entitled to both awards for service in an area for which the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) has been authorized.

(d) Public Law 107-314 of 2 December 2002 stipulates that personnel who were awarded the Armed Forces Expeditioanry Medal (AFEM) for their participation in Operation FREQUENT WIND, during the period 29 to 30 April 1975, may elect the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) in lieu of the Armed Forces Expeditioanry Medal (AFEM) for such service. However, no person shall be entitled to both awards for the same service.

(2) Personnel Eligible. Only personnel attached to ships or units, and who actually participated in the given operation, are eligible for the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM). This includes personnel attached to a squadron or unit embarked in a ship during the period for which that ship is eligible. Members of rear echelons, transients, observers, and personnel assigned for short periods or TAD and training duty are normally not eligible for the award; however, consideration will be given in those instances where the local commander certifies a particular and significant contribution by an individual. Such certification should be submitted to CNO/CMC, via the commander who exercised operational control in the area involved.

(a) Shore Duty. Attached to or regularly serving, for one or more days, with an organization participating in or directly supporting military operations.

(b) Sea Duty. Attached to or regularly serving, for one or more days, aboard a naval vessel directly supporting military operations.

(c) Air Duty. Actual participation as a crew member in one or more aerial flights, directly supporting military operations.

(d) Temporary Duty. Service for 30 consecutive or 60 nonconsecutive days, except that the time limit may be waived for personnel participating in actual combat operations.

(3) Eligible Ships and Units. Ships and units present in the area merely for training purposes are not eligible for the award. Squadrons or units embarked in a ship, during the period for which that ship is listed as eligible, are eligible for the medal.

(4) Limitations. The medal shall be ,awarded only for operations for which no other U.S. campaign medal is approved. No person may be issued both the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) and the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (AFEM) for service in Vietnam, and no person shall be entitled to more than one award of the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM).

c. Engagement Stars. A 3/16 inch bronze star is authorized for wear on the suspension ribbon and ribbon bar of the Vietnam Service Medal (VSM) for each of the following campaigns:

I. Vietnam Advisory Campaign 15 Mar 62 to 07 Mar 65
11. Vietnam Defense Campaign 08 Mar 65 to 24 Dec 65
111. Vietnam Counter-offensive 25 Dec 65 to 30 Jun 66
IV. Vietnam Counter-offensive I1 01 Jul 66 to 31 May 67
V. Vietnam Counter-offensive I11 01 Jun 67 to 29 Jan 68
VI . Tet Counter-offensive 30 Jan 68 to 01 Apr 68
VII .Vietnam Counter-offensive IV 02 Apr 68 to 30 Jun 68
VIII. Vietnam Counter-offensive V 01 Jul 68 to 01 Nov 68
IX. Vietnam Counter-offensive VI 02 Nov 68 to 22 Feb 69
X. Tet 69 Counter-offensive 23 Feb 69 to 08 Jun 69
XI. Vietnam, Summer-Fall 1969 09 Jun 69 to 31 Oct 69
XII. Vietnam, Winter-Spring 1970 01 Nov 69 to 30 Apr 70
XIII. Sanctuary Counter-offensive 01 May 70 to 30 Jun 70
XIV. Vietnam Counter-offensive VII 01 Jul 70 to 30 Jun 71
XV . Consolidation I 01 Jul 71 to 30 Nov 71
XVI . Consolidation I1 01 Dec 71 to 29 Mar 72
XVII . Vietnam Ceasefire Campaign 30 Mar 72 to 28 Jan 73
XVIII. Operation FREQUENT WIND 29 Apr 75 to 30 Apr 75

Authorized Devices: Bronze Star, Silver Star,
Bronze Marine Corps Device(Navy),
Bronze Arrowhead (Army)

 
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