Instituted: Army 1918; USAF July 6, 1960
Description: The Air Force Cross consists of a bronze cross with an oxidized satin finish. Centered on the obverse of the cross is a gold plated American bald eagle, wings displayed against a cloud formation, (as used on the seal of the Air Force). This design is encircled by a laurel wreath in green enamel, edged in gold. The reverse of the cross is blank and suitable for engraving.
Ribbon: The Ribbon has a very wide center stripe of Brittany blue with narrow stripes of white and red at the edges. Almost identical to the Distinguished Service Cross, except for the lighter blue center stripe, indicating the close connection of these awards.
Criteria: Awarded for extraordinary heroism, not justifying the award of a Medal of Honor, to any person, who while serving with the U. S. Air Force while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force, or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.
Background: Designed by Eleanor Cox, an employee of the Air Force and was sculpted by Thomas Hudson Jones of the Institute of Heraldry. The Air Force Cross was established by Congress, Public Law 88-593, on July 6, 1960, amended Section 8742 of Title 10, U.S. Code to change the designation of "Distinguished Service Cross" to "Air Force Cross" in case of awards made under Air Force Authority.This cross is the Air Force version of the Distinguished Service Cross.
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