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Flowers left for Booker Clements
The Korean War Service Medal (or Republic of Korea War Service Medal (ROKWSM)) is a decoration of South Korea which was first authorized in December 1950. Originally known as the Incident Participation Medal the medal was first authorized to South Korean troops who had participated in the initial counter-assaults against North Korean aggression in June 1950. In 1951, President Syngman Rhee ordered that the Incident Participation Medal be renamed as the War Service Medal and further authorized the decoration to any troops who were defending South Korea against invasion. In 1954, the South Korean government authorized the now called Korean War Service Medal to all United Nations troops who had fought in the Korean War between the dates of June 25, 1950 to July 27, 1953. While a number of countries accepted the award, at the time of the Korean War Service Medal's presentation to U.N. troops the United States of America declined to award the medal to U.S. soldiers. This was based on regulations of the time which curtailed the acceptance and wear of foreign decorations on U.S. military uniforms. Although subsequently some veterans attempted to have the decoration accepted, the Korean War Service Medal faded into history and was not heard of again until 1996. At that time the Army noted that it could find no record that the Korean Government ever offered the medal to the Department of Defense. This was technically true since the original offer was made to the United Nations Command. The Army took the position that unless the Korean Government resurrected their original offer, it was "not in a position to officially recognize or approve acceptance of the medal. In 1999, the South Korean government proposed the decoration be reactivated and retroactively awarded to all Korean and U.N. veterans who had served in the Korean War. Planned presentations of the award were scheduled for June 2000, on the 50th anniversary of the Korean War. On August 20, 1999, Francis M. Rush Jr., Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army authorized the Korean War Service Medal for distribution and wear by service members of the United States military. The task of issuing the medal was assigned to Randolph Air Force Base while the National Personnel Records Center was responsible for providing documentation to verify eligibility and updating military records to show receipt of the award.
- Judy Richards
 Added: Jul. 13, 2012

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