The Congressional Gold Medal was presented to the American Fighter Aces collectively today during a ceremony in Emancipation Hall at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center.
The medal was awarded to the American Fighter Aces in recognition of their heroic service to the United States throughout the history of aviation warfare. American Fighter Aces are military pilots credited with destroying five or more confirmed enemy aircraft in aerial combat during a war or conflict in which the U.S. Armed Forces have participated. Aces have served in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War. More than 60,000 fighter pilots have flown since World War I, but fewer than 1,500 are called Fighter Aces.
The medal’s obverse design features four pilots, representing World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War; an ace of spades; and military wings with a centered globe, symbolizing the global impact of the group’s service. Inscriptions are “AMERICAN FIGHTER ACES,” “ARMY,” “NAVY,” “AIR FORCE,” and “MARINES.”
The reverse design features four aircraft used by American Fighter Aces and includes five stars to represent the minimum number of aerial combat victories required for certification. Inscriptions are “DUTY COURAGE AGGRESSIVENESS,” “2014,” and “ACT OF CONGRESS.”
Public Law 113-105, which requires the United States Mint to strike the Congressional Gold Medal for the American Fighter Aces, also authorizes the bureau to strike and sell bronze reproductions of the medal. The three-inch medal (product code 15MC) is priced at $39.95, and the 1.5-inch medal (product code 15MD) is priced at $6.95. Both medals will be available for purchase starting today at 3:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time via the bureau’s online catalog at http://catalog.usmint.gov/shop/medals/ and at 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). Hearing- and speech-impaired customers with TTY equipment may call 1-888-321-MINT (6468).
About the United States Mint
The United States Mint was created by Congress in 1792 and became part of the Department of the Treasury in 1873. It is the Nation’s sole manufacturer of legal tender coinage and is responsible for producing circulating coinage for the Nation to conduct its trade and commerce. The United States Mint also produces numismatic products, including proof, uncirculated, and commemorative coins; Congressional Gold Medals; and silver and gold bullion coins. The United States Mint’s numismatic programs are self-sustaining and operate at no cost to taxpayers.