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Author Topic: Wearing of ribbons, etc  (Read 9320 times)
tjdull
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« on: November 27, 2007, 12:46:19 PM »

Just a question to go out you esteemed fellows about wearing ribbons on Class A uniforms ...

I've got an original size 46, 4th ID, master sgt tunic with an embroidered CIB and standard campaign ribbons.  It was sold to me as authentic from a deceased vets auction. 

Should I remove these items when I wear it?  An old Vietnam vet in my barracks at FIG a couple of years ago told me I should.

Well, what do you think?
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papajoad
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« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2007, 04:52:50 PM »

That is a question you will have to answer.  However, as a Re-enactor in the unit that is my main impression, we have a system to earn your awards, some re-enactors portray a family member, others Honor famous soldiers, yet some just create a uniform for what ever reason. Most never wear the higher Awards of valor such as the Silver/Bronze Star or the Purple Heart, in my opinion that would be just wrong.

There is a fine line between being a Living Historian or re-enactor; are you Honoring our Nations soldiers or are you stealing Valor?  There are Federal laws to help prevent those from stealing Valor, those laws apply to everyone.  Re-enactors are not above the law, but in the world of re-enacting it is how you do it and why you do it that makes the difference. 

Are hobby and in retrospect our Nation has allowed Living Historians the freedom to portray our Nations Hero's without legal prejudice. It is all in the way you do it.  Thus my opening statement still holds true, you will have to answer that question.

Yes, I do wear WWII ribbons, rank etc on my Class A.

papajoad
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Gump
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« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2007, 06:09:47 PM »

Just a question to go out you esteemed fellows about wearing ribbons on Class A uniforms ...

I've got an original size 46, 4th ID, master sgt tunic with an embroidered CIB and standard campaign ribbons.  It was sold to me as authentic from a deceased vets auction. 

Should I remove these items when I wear it?  An old Vietnam vet in my barracks at FIG a couple of years ago told me I should.

Well, what do you think?
I do 29th div for ww2 reenacting and i based my impression off off a friends dad who served in the 29th during the war.Noow he gave me his fathers ribbons and cib,and i was aked to wear it when representing him.so in that request i will but im going to get relics so the original dont get damaged.if its to honor a dear friend,then in my eyes you should,but if your doing just and ordinary impression i wouldnt.its all about paying your respects.im currently in the guard and if i seen a regular smoe were my combat action badge for his impression,it would make me feel questioned.so its really up to you to answer that.im with you papjoad.
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papajoad
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« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2007, 10:51:25 PM »

Gump I agree with you.  One of the things that I did not say is this:  The closer to real time that you get, (current military), the closer you get to dishonoring the Veterans by wearing the current awards as a re-enactor (UNLESS YOU EARNED THEM).  The further away you are from the time in history that your impression is, WWII, Korea, Vietnam etc, the more in tune you are with the spirit of re-enacting. Again, it is up to you to decide which direction you are going to go with your impression.

It is very easy to wear a Class A uniform with no rank or ribbons etc.   

One thing, I never served in the Military, I NEVER, EVER CLAIM THAT I HAVE, NOR WILL I EVER SAY THAT I HAVE SERVED MY COUNTRY IN THE ARMED FORCES, I WOULD NEVER DO SUCH A LOW LIFE THING AS TO DISHONOR THE MEMORY OF MY DAD WHO DID SERIVE OR MY SON WHO IS CURRENTLY IN IRAQ.

papajoad
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tjdull
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« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2007, 02:58:11 PM »

Thanks.  The stuff stays on.  I'll try and do some research on the deceased vet and wear it in his honor.

Unfortunately, the last war my ancestors fought in was the Civil War.  My Dad had a war job and my brother, a Spec4, was stationed at White Sands Missile Base during Nam.

When I did CW Reenacting, I often marched in parades - Memorial Day, Veteran's Day, etc.  I always told people that I was marching because "they" -the civil war vet's - couldn't ... they are, of course, all gone.  I wanted people to remember them. 

I feel the same way about this.  You guys are great.
 
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Gump
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« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2007, 07:50:53 PM »

Thanks.  The stuff stays on.  I'll try and do some research on the deceased vet and wear it in his honor.

Unfortunately, the last war my ancestors fought in was the Civil War.  My Dad had a war job and my brother, a Spec4, was stationed at White Sands Missile Base during Nam.

When I did CW Reenacting, I often marched in parades - Memorial Day, Veteran's Day, etc.  I always told people that I was marching because "they" -the civil war vet's - couldn't ... they are, of course, all gone.  I wanted people to remember them. 

I feel the same way about this.  You guys are great.
 
wait so everyone that might be confused i dont have my combat action badge i was just throwing that out as an example.my best friend has one and im sure if someone who didnt earn it wore it pass him he would get upset and i think he should.thanks guys sorry if anyone was confused
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tjdull
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« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2007, 11:32:53 AM »

Nope ... no confusion here ....

If somebody sees the CIB and questions me, I'll be able to say who it belogned to, what he did, and that I'm wearing his uniform in his honor, because he is gone and he deserves to be remembered.
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Railsplitter
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« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2007, 08:35:40 AM »

I agree wholeheartedly with Gary's assessment...are you stealing valor or honoring. 

It is the policy that inside my own unit, you can wear limited campaign ribbons, and the unit awards, but anything else must be personally earned by you.  We have several members with real combat patches, jump wings (earned through Benning), and BSMs, CIBs, PHs, etc.  I dont see how what we do can replicate in the hobby what they did to earn those medals through long deployments, recovery from injuries, family distress caused by the deployments, and the long term toll those took on their lives.  The medals are theirs for the right reasons, and wearing them for any other reason seems a disservice.  I have a former student of mine, and another brother of a former student of mine with BSMs and PH buried near the entrance to Jefferson Barracks cemetary in the last two years.

As for wearing a relative's medals to honor them, I think this is a bit misplaced.  You can honor them by putting them in a display case, or telling people about them, but the deeds that were done to earn those metals belong wholly to them, not you.  The right to wear those is not transferable from one to another.  You either earned them or you didnt. 

MAJ Tim
« Last Edit: December 11, 2007, 08:46:33 AM by Railsplitter » Logged
Hollywood
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« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2007, 05:14:11 PM »

Wow, this is a difficult subject to address. I think when it come to reenacting you should only wear the ribbons that your unit permits you to wear, after earning them (ETO Ribbon, Good Conduct Ribbon, etc.). I think it's way out of line to wear ribbons for valor (Silver Star, Bronze Star, etc.), and, as far as I know, illegal to do so unless you actually earned them. When it comes to wearing a relatives uniform, this is where I'm torn. Because you're honoring the memory of that vet, and obviously want to show your pride in the awards they have won, but you don't want to be disrespectful by wearing awards that you haven't won yourself (but of course, most of us wear rank that we never earned either). I think this is something that could be decided case by case.

-Hollywood
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« Reply #9 on: December 16, 2007, 09:58:32 AM »

If you want to honor the vet, set up a display case with a picture of them in it that tells their story, take them a meal in the nursing home, put flowers on the grave.  I cant see how wearing the medals they earned honors them in any way.  When you put them on your uniform, there isnt a banner that says "These medals are in honor of PFC Smith."  People look at it and assume they are yours.  Perception is reality even with the best of intentions.

MAJ Tim
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Hollywood
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« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2007, 09:32:47 PM »

Yeah, I suppose Tim is right. When someone looks at you in uniform they assume the ribbons you wear are ones that you earned. Touché.

-Hollywood
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ffmoose
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« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2008, 08:40:01 PM »

I agree with Tim, the only time you should wear the ribbons or medals is if you have earned them. No other reason.

Steve
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Ranger_Nick
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« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2008, 02:17:44 PM »


Gents:

This is a common question.  The totally correct answer is "Do not wear decorations for valor unless you earned them".

Exceptions could be made for theatrical productions and instances where one is portraying the recipient in the first person.  Capt. Winters would look pretty funny in the Band of Brothers movie without the proper uniform items.

We walk a fine line in this hobby, some vets like what we are doing and don't mind correct impressions including all decorations.  Some guys really hate what we do and get bent out of shape for wearing ANYTHING related to the uniform especially the decorations.

Now to answer the question...  Since the CIB is embroidered, I think you have a somewhat rare thing and should try to find one without any decorations on it.  Do not cut that uniform up.  Keep it whole and tell the story of the man who wore it.

N
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Mont
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« Reply #13 on: February 23, 2008, 04:25:07 PM »

When there is a question regarding the wearing of elite unit patches, valor, etc., the person to go to first is the WWII veteran, then active military. The reason for this is that we portray them and their service, and honestly, what they think of us is important to me and I am sure, important to most reenactors. If we do not have  their approval, then we do not honor them.
I asked an active US Ranger if he thought it was appropriate for me to wear the Ranger scroll (late 44 impression and Eisenhower dress uniform) since it is modern in its form. His response was positive, and I continue to wear it. If he was negative, I would stay with the Diamond.
Tim, you are right on with this one.

Mont
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bubba42
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« Reply #14 on: February 24, 2008, 09:08:41 PM »

i agree with tim on this in years past there was a guy from the chicago area that was wearing a cmh ribbon bar alot of the old guard from the hrs will remember that guy and yes he didnt earn it he purchased it he was confronted by several units! but how far do we go before we strip unit patchs rank structure because we  didnt earn them either or serve with the unit we portray but as for ribbons or cib i do not wear them period i agree with tim because as for my fathers and my grandfathers they are in a shadow box they earned them not me 
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