National Defense Service Medal

The National Defense Service Medal (NDSM) is a decoration presented to recognize all military members who have served in active duty during a declared "national emergency". To be eligible, members must have served honorably during one of the following time periods: The Korean War from June 27, 1950 - July 27, 1954; The Vietnam War from January 1, 1961 - August 14, 1974; The Gulf War from August 2, 1990 - November 30, 1995; the War on Terrorism from September 11, 2001 - a yet to be determined date. There is no requirement on the amount of time served within the time frames. Subsequent NDSM awards for active service in more than one of the eligible time periods are denoted by service stars worn on the original award ribbon.