This medal was authorized in 1950 for ten years of honorable and satisfactory service within a 12 year period as a member of one or more of the Reserve Components of the Armed Forces of the United States.
An executive order on Aug. 8, 1996, authorized the award of a bronze letter “M” mobilization device to U.S. reserve component members who were called to active-duty service in support of designated operations on or after August 1, 1990 (the M device was not authorized for any operations prior to August 1, 1990, although it had been previously proposed). Units called up in support of Operations Desert Storm/Desert Shield were the first units to be authorized the “M” device. If an “M” is authorized, the medal is awarded even though service might be less than ten years. Previous to this change, only bronze hourglasses were awarded at each successive 10-year point (first hourglass at the 20-year point).
The front of the medal depicts a flaming torch placed vertically between a crossed bugle and powder horn; thirteen stars and thirteen rays surround the design. The front of the medal is the same for all services; only the reverse design is different (see designs below). Bronze numerals beginning with “2” are worn to the right of the bronze “M” on the ribbon bar and below the “M” on the medal, indicating the total number of times the individual was mobilized. Bronze, silver, and gold hourglasses are awarded for 10, 20, and 30 years service, respectively.
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