NAVY AND MARINE CORPS ACHIEVEMENT

Although there are Achievement medals for each branch of the Armed Forces (as well as one for  Joint Service), the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, established as a ribbon-only award in 1961, was the first. The award underwent several name changes, starting out as “Secretary of the Navy Commendation for Achievement with Ribbon” before being shortened to simply the “Navy Achievement Medal” in 1967. It wasn’t until 1994 that the award was given its current designation of Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.

It is awarded to junior officers or enlisted personnel—including Reserves on active or inactive duty—for meritorious service or achievement in either combat or non-combat situations. It can be based on either sustained performance or specific achievement of a superlative nature; local commanders decide when and under what circumstances the medal is given.

In 2016, the Department of Defense announced that it would be one of six medals for which both of the newly created “C” (Combat Conditions) and “R” (Remote Impact) devices were authorized. The Navy published its guidance for the issuance and wear of these two devices in ALNAV 055/17, released on 24 August 2017 and posted at the Navy Personnel Command Web site. At the same time these two devices were authorized for the award, however, the DoD announced that the "V" Valor device would no longer be issued with it.  The "V" was originally authorized for wear with the medal until 1974, when the Navy removed the medal from the list of awards that could be issued with the device for the next seventeen years (the "V" was re-established for wear with the medal in 1991).

Designed by the Institute of Heraldry, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal is a bronze square with a star in each clipped corner. In the center is a "fouled" anchor, one that has been hooked on an impediment or had its cable wound around the anchor's stock or flukes. The recipient's name is engraved on the medal's blank back.

The medal hangs from a myrtle green ribbon with a narrow orange stripe near each edge.  Subsequent awards are denoted with gold stars; a silver star is worn in lieu of five gold stars.
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