Whenever a Soldier is preparing for a Permanent Change of Station (PCS), in addition to being “farewelled” at the unit Hail and Farewell they usually also receive a PCS award which recognizes their contribution to the unit’s mission during their tenure. Generally, as Soldiers increase in rank, their responsibility also increases so the level of the award increases. Often, the higher awards also demand contribution above what is normally expected as part of their duty as well as contribution beyond the unit itself to the wider military community where the unit is tenant.
With just about a week left before I PCS, I received my PCS award at today’s Commander’s Stand-up (staff meeting to brief the commander on the week’s activity and focus). It was a good place to receive the award, since it was among the other brigade staff with whom I have worked for the past year.
Here is information about the Meritorious Service Medal according to the Code of Federal Regulation, Title 32:
§ 578.18 Meritorious Service Medal.
(a) Criteria. The Meritorious Service Medal was established by Executive Order 11448, January 16, 1969 as amended by Executive Order 12312, July 2, 1981. It is awarded to any member of the Armed Forces of the United States or to any member of the Armed Forces of a friendly foreign nation who, has distinguished himself or herself by outstanding meritorious achievement or service under the following circumstances:
(1) After January 16, 1969, for meritorious service or achievement while serving in a non-combat area.
(2) On or after September 11, 2001, for outstanding non-combat meritorious achievement or service in a non-combat or combat area.
(b) Description. A Bronze medal, 11/2 inches in diameter overall, consisting of six rays issuant from the upper three points of a five-pointed star with beveled edges and containing two smaller stars defined by incised outlines; in front of the lower part of the star an eagle with wings upraised standing upon two upward curving branches of laurel tied with a ribbon between the feet of the eagle. The reverse has the encircled inscriptions “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and “MERITORIOUS SERVICE”. The moired ribbon is 13/8 inches wide and consists of the following stripes: 1/8 inch Crimson 67112; 1/4 inch White 67101; center 5/8 inch Crimson;1/4 inch White; and 1/8 inch Crimson.