Presidential Medal of Freedom, Neck Badge
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The Presidental Medal of Freedom was established by President John F. Kennedy by Executive Order on February 22, 1963. The Presidental Medal of Freedom superseded the Medal of Freedom established by President Harry S. Truman in 1945. The Presidental Medal of Freedom is the highest civilian award in the United States (alongside the Congressional Gold Medal) and is presented to American and foreign diplomats and government dignitaries in recognition of meritorious contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, or culture and other significant public and private endeavours. The Decoration was first awarded on December 6, 1963, shortly after the death of John F. Kennedy, by President Lyndon B. Johnson. The Presidental Medal of Freedom generally is presented annually to recipients selected by the President, however, it has not been awarded every year since its inception. Approximately over 400 Decorations have been awarded, including a posthumous award to John F. Kennedy.
The Decoration is awarded in 2 grades, however, the distinguishing criteria is uncertain. The II Class award is simply referred to as the Presidental Medal of Freedom. The II Class is awarded as a Neck Badge.
A Silver bald American eagle emblem is authorized for wear on the suspension ribbon of miniature versions of the Neck Badge.
The Neck Badge is worn by women from a bow on the shoulder. The Presidental Medal of Freedom is the only American Decoration to feature a European style bow suspension ribbon for ladies.
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