The Various Firefighter Medals Explained

It’s important that we celebrate the heroes in our society who go above and beyond to sacrifice for others.

There are more than 300,000 firefighters employed today. Many of these professionals work tirelessly and on call to respond to medical situations, fires, and other emergencies.

Medals and firefighter pendants provide an excellent opportunity to honor firefighters for their service.

You can learn more about firefighter medals below.

The Medal of Valor

This is a medal that is awarded to a firefighter who goes above and beyond the call of duty in their service. It’s an award that is given out whenever someone puts themselves at serious risk and acts without accounting for their own well-being.

The Medal of Valor is one of the most prestigious and specific firefighter medals, which is why there are three classes:

  • Class 1 Medal of Valor is given when a firefighter is heroic in the face of significant risk and danger
  • Class 2 Medal of Valor is given when a firefighter shows heroism, but not to the standard of Class 1
  • Class 3 Medal of Valor is given when a firefighter sets themselves apart through distinguished service

The Class 1 and Class 2 medals are Gold, White, and Blue. Class 1 has two stars, while Class 2 has one star. The Class 3 Medal is Gold and Red with a single blue star.

The Medal of Courage

This is the firefighter pendant that is awarded when they show bravery and take initiative in a situation. It’s given out when it comes in conjunction with a hazardous fire or weather event.

This medal features a red and white ribbon with a gold star.

The Medal for Bravery

These pendants are issued for firefighters who exhibit significant bravery while on the scene. It is often given out when someone shows durability and stamina while responding to the call.

Supporters of firefighters often buy these medals to honor family members or community heroes. For instance, people have purchased St. Florian firefighter pendants to celebrate firefighter achievements and sacrifices.

The Medal for Bravery typically has a red, white, and blue ribbon, along with a gold star with wings.

The Lifesaving Medal

Firefighters tend to get the biggest recognition and acclaim when they directly save someone’s life. These firefighter pendants are given out in situations where a person is taken to safety after being stuck, immobile, unconscious, or unable to exit the building by themselves.

A firefighter also might receive this medal for quickly taking action and performing CPR on a patient while awaiting further medical help. This medal typically features a dark red and blue ribbon, along with a gold star with red etching.

Familiarize Yourself With Firefighter Medals

Learning about these firefighter medals can give you an appreciation of the career field and the type of sacrifice it takes. Different fire departments have different award systems, along with their own color codes and designs.

Look for a company that sells medals you’ll be proud to collect or hand out.

Bookmark our site and check back for information on firefighting, emergency services, and more.

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