Silver Star Service Banner Day – May 1, 2021

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Silver Star Service Banner Day is celebrated on May 1. The day honors the sacrifices of the U.S. military personnel as well as those awarded with the Silver Star.

History of Silver Star Service Banner Day

During the early 1800s, “gallantry in action” was awarded with the Citation Star. The Citation Star was replaced with the Silver Star Medal later on. The Silver Star is awarded to those who show distinguished valor in combat. It is the third-highest decoration in the United States Armed Forces. 

Silver Star Service Banner Day recognizes the sacrifices of the ill, wounded, and dying service personnel. The day also honors those awarded with the Silver Star Medal as well as their families. The tradition of the service banner with blue stars covered with threads of silver, which represented the wounded service members, began during World War I. However, it went out of use when gold and blue star service banners were adopted by the United States officially between the wars. The color silver symbolizes the gallantry of the service members and blue symbolizes hope. These two colors reinforce the message of Silver Star Service Banner Day.

Although founded in 2004 by the Silver Star Families of America (SSFOA) organization, the day was only made official in 2010. The United States House of Representatives also made May 1 Silver Star Service Banner Day. The main aim of Silver Star Families of America (SSFOA) is to evoke gratitude and respect for the sacrifices made by military veterans and members of the U.S. Armed Forces by having a Silver Star Service Banner on a window and/or a Silver Star Flag. Many agencies and groups have stepped forward with dedicated efforts for assisting the ill, disabled, and wounded war veterans, and recognizing their sacrifices as well as that of their families. 

Silver Star Service Banner Day timeline

1926
The “War Mothers” Flag

The “War Mothers” Flag over the capitol is first flown on Veterans Day (November 11) to honor the service of the veterans.

1938
Veterans Day

November 11 becomes a national holiday (Veterans Day) after the passing of a resolution by Congress.

1942
Silver Star Medal

The Silver Star Medal replaces the Citation Star as the award for valor in combat.

March 24, 2010
The Proposal

The U.S. House of Representatives passes resolution 534, proposing May 1 as Silver Star Service Banner Day.

Silver Star Service Banner Day FAQs

What happens on Silver Star Service Banner Day?

Silver Star Service Banner Day is a day to honor the military service members who were injuried in combat. Organizations host events to recognize and pay tribute to their services. People visit the graves of the deceased.

What is the Silver Star given for?

The Silver Star Medal is given for the display of exceptional courage and distinguished acts of valor in the field of battle.

Who was the first person to get a Silver Star?

General Douglas MacArthur was the first person to receive the Silver Star Medal in 1932. He also received the medal seven more times for his gallantry in World War II.

How to Observe Silver Star Service Banner Day

  1. Show Gratitude

    Many veteran organizations host events to honor Silver Star recipients and their families. Volunteer and show your gratitude.

  2. Get involved with the SSFOA

    Get involved with the Silver Star Families of America (SSFOA) and help in fundraising and spreading awareness in your area.

  3. Honor the fallen and their families

    Pay a visit to the graves of war veterans with a flag or flowers. You can also take the family member of a deceased war veteran to lunch to show your gratitude and respect.

5 Facts About Silver Star Service Banner Day That You Should Know

  1. 1 in 10

    1 in 10 of those who serve in the U.S. military receive serious injuries due to combat.

  2. The deserving

    The U.S. government has awarded between 100,000 and 150,000 Silver Star Medals.

  3. The growth of the Silver Star

    Other than the 50 U.S. states, proclamations for recognizing the Silver Star families have been issued by Saipan, Guam, the Chickasaw Nation, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the District of Columbia.

  4. Col. Davis Hackworth

    Colonel Davis Hackworth was the recipient of 10 Silver Star Medals, the most amount awarded to any one person, for his valor in Vietnam and Korea.

  5. Lt. Col. Cordelia Cook

    Lieutenant Colonel Cordelia Cook was the first woman to receive the Silver Star for her duty in World War II.

Why Silver Star Service Banner Day is Important

  1. It pays tribute to war veterans

    It is a day that pays tribute to the ill, wounded, and deceased war veterans for their service.

  2. It recognizes the brave service of veterans

    The war veterans laid down or risked their lives for their country. This day is dedicated to their gallantry in war.

  3. It motivates the youth

    The day also motivates the youth and makes them realize the greatness that lies in serving their country

Silver Star Service Banner Day dates

YearDateDay
2021May 1Saturday
2022May 1Sunday
2023May 1Monday
2024May 1Wednesday
2025May 1Thursday