The Mexican Service Medal is an award of the United States military which was established by General Orders of the United States War Department on December 12, 1917. The Mexican Service Medal recognizes those service members who performed military service against Mexican forces between the dates of April 12, 1911 and June 16, 1919.
To be awarded the Mexican Service Medal, a service member was required to perform military duty during the time period of eligibility and in one of the following military engagements.
- Veracruz Expedition: April 24 to November 26, 1914
- Punitive Expedition into Mexico: March 14, 1916 to February 7, 1917
- Buena Vista, Mexico: December 1, 1917
- San Bernardino Canyon, Mexico: December 26, 1917
- La Grulla, Texas: January 8 – January 9, 1918
- Pilares, Chihuahua: March 28, 1918
- Nogales, Arizona: November 1–26, 1915, or August 27, 1918
- El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua: June 15 – June 16, 1919
The United States Navy issued the Mexican Service Medal to members of the Navy and Marines who participated in any of the above actions, as well as to service member who served aboard U.S. naval vessels, patrolling Mexican waters, between April 21, and November 26, 1914, or between March 14, 1916, and February 7, 1917.
The Mexican Service Medal was also awarded to any service member who was wounded or killed while participating in action any against hostile Mexican forces between April 12, 1911 and February 7, 1917.
Although a single decoration, both the Army and Navy issued two different versions of the Mexican Service Medal. The Army Mexican Service Medal displayed an engraving of a yucca plant, while the Navy version depicted a water front fortress. Both medals displayed the annotation "1911 - 1917" on the bottom of the medal.
The Mexican Service Medal was a one time decoration and there were no service stars authorized for those who had participated in multiple engagements. For those Army members who had been cited for gallantry in combat, the Citation Star was authorized as a device to the Mexican Service Medal. There were no devices authorized for the Navy's version of the decoration.
A similar decoration, known as the Mexican Border Service Medal also existed for those who had performed support duty to Mexican combat expeditions from within the United States.
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