US Air Force Distinguished Service Cross (DSC), Mini Medal, Ribbon and Lapel Pin
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US AIR FORCE CROSS (AFC)
The Air Force Cross (AFC) is the United States Air Force and United States Space Force's second highest military decoration for airmen and guardians who distinguish themselves with extraordinary heroism in combat with an armed enemy force. The medal is awarded to any person, while serving in any capacity with the Air Force or Space Force, who distinguish themselves by extraordinary heroism, not justifying the award of a Medal of Honor.
The Air Force Cross is equivalent to the U.S. Army's Distinguished Service Cross, Navy and Marine Corps' Navy Cross, and Coast Guard Cross. Prior to July 6, 1960, members of the Air Force were awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.
Originally entitled the "Distinguished Service Cross (Air Force)", the Air Force Cross was first proposed in 1947 after the creation of the United States Air Force in September that year as an independent armed service. The medal was designed by Eleanor Cox, an employee of the Air Force, and was sculpted by Thomas Hudson Jones of the U.S. Army Institute of Heraldry.
The Air Force Cross was established by PL 88-593, 1 November 1965 and made effective 6 July 1960 by 10 USC, Section 8742; amended on July 6, 1960 by PL 86–593 in Chapter 857, Sections 8742, 8744 and 8745 of Title 10, USC to substitute "Air Force cross" for "Distinguished-service cross" and inserted "Air Force cross" in Sections 8748 and 8749. Prior to July 6, 1960, United States Air Force airmen were awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.
Additional awards of the Air Force Cross are annotated by oak leaf clusters.
Criteria for award
Title 10, Chapter 857, Section 8742. Air Force Cross: Award
The President may award an Air Force cross of appropriate design, with ribbons and appurtenances, to a person who, while serving in any capacity with the Air Force, distinguishes themselves by extraordinary heroism not justifying the award of a Medal of Honor:
- ged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party. The medal is usually presented by the Secretary of the Air Force in a formal ceremony at the Pentagon.
- while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
- while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or
- while serving with friendly foreign forces
- engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party. The medal is usually presented by the Secretary of the Air Force in a formal ceremony at the Pentagon.
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