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Wear Approval for Service Star on Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal

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On 9 February 2015, the Department of Defense authorized the wear of service stars on the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal (GWOT-E) to recognize subsequent awards for deployment in support of approved operations.

Effective immediately, service members are authorized to wear a service star on the GWOT-E suspension and/or service ribbon to denote each subsequent award. For example, a service member initially awarded the GWOT-E for an Operation ENDURING FREEDOM deployment whom is subsequently authorized a second GWOT-E for an Operation INHERENT RESOLVE deployment would wear a single service star on the GWOT-E or service ribbon to denote the subsequent award. Only one award is authorized for each GWOT-E approved operation. The five GWOT-E approved operations are as follows:

  • ENDURING FREEDOM September 11, 2001 – TBD
  • IRAQI FREEDOM March 19, 2003 – August 31, 2010
  • NOMAD SHADOW November 5, 2007 – TBD
  • NEW DAWN September 1, 2010 – December 31, 2011
  • INHERENT RESOLVE June 15, 2014 – TBD

This policy is retroactive to September 11, 2001. However conversions will not be authorized. Service members who earned the GWOT-E but elected the Air Force Expeditionary Medal(AFEM)/Iraq Campaign Medal(ICM)/Afghanistan Campaign Medal(ACM) will not be allowed to convert back to the GWOT-E, nor will they qualify for a service star (for the conversion period) on an existing GWOT-E from a later deployment.

Active duty, Air National Guard (ANG) and Air Force Reserve (AFRES) Airmen awarded the GWOT-E who have completed a subsequent deployment to a qualifying area/operation will report to their servicing Military Personnel Section(MPS)/Commanders Support Staff (CSS) with supporting documentation to be awarded a service star to their GWOT-E. Supporting documentation would be contingency exercise deployment (CED) orders or completed paid travel vouchers or decoration citations/orders, which indicate the deployment date, the area of deployment and/or denote the name of the operation. The MPS/CSS will verify entitlement using the supporting documentation. Upon verification, the Military Personnel Section/Commanders Support Staff will update Millitary Personnel Data System and prepare/update an AF Form 104, Service Medal Award Verification, to document the award of service stars to the Airman’s GWOT-E. The AF 104 will then be forwarded for inclusion in the Airman’s Personnel Records Display Application file.

Service Star request to the GWOT-E for retired, separated, or deceased Airman will be validated by the office of primary responsibility based on the Airman's category of service. Requests will be submitted using a Standard Form (SF) 180 (Request Pertaining to Military Records) along with supporting documentation to the address below. Additionally, AFRES and ANG personnel may apply for the service stars by creating an incident/message under the “my account” section. If an Airman cannot submit via myPers, they can mail supporting documentation to the address below.

For Retired/Separated Air Force Active Duty Personnel:

  • AFPC/DPSIDR
  • 550 C Street W
  • JBSA-Randolph AFB TX 78150

For Retired/Separated Air Force Reserve/Air National Guard Personnel:

  • ARPC/DPTSA
  • 18420 E Silver Creek Ave
  • Bldg 390 MS-68
  • Buckley AFB CO 80011-9502

Supporting documentation would be CED orders, completed paid travel vouchers or decoration citations/orders, which indicate the deployment dates, the area of deployment, and/or denotes the name of the Operation. The primary next of kin (PNOK) of deceased Airmen will submit requests in accordance with the guidance provided in this paragraph and on the Standard Form 180.

SF 180 requests for service star award to the GWOT-E from PNOK on behalf of deceased Airman must include a copy of the Airman’s death certificate. PNOK is defined as, in descending order, the surviving spouse, natural or adopted children in order of seniority, parents in order of seniority, unless legal exclusive (sole) custody was granted to a person by reason of a court decree or statutory provision, blood or adoptive relative who was granted legal custody of the person by a court decree or statutory provision, brothers or sisters in order of seniority, grandparents in order of seniority, and persons standing in loco parentis to the member.

This policy supersedes GWOT-E battle star policy. This policy will be defined in the next revision of AFI 36-2803, The Air Force Military Awards and Decorations program.

Active duty Airmen with questions should address them to their local FSS/MPS. FSS/MPS should contact their MAJCOM counterparts to resolve or address questions/comments or obtain additional information. MAJCOMs may address questions or concerns of this message to the Air Force Recognition Programs Branch (AFPC/DPSIDR), DSN 665-2516 ANG and AFRES Airmen can contact the myPers - Total Force Service Center at Contact Us (CAC Required).