Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon
|Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon|
Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with and without gold frame
|Awarded by Department of the Air Force|
|Next (higher)||Air Force Overseas Long Tour Service Ribbon|
|Next (lower)||Air Force Longevity Service Award|
The Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon (AFESR) is a military award of the United States Air Force which was first created in June 2003. The ribbon is awarded to any member of the Air Force who completes a standard contingency deployment.
The regulations of the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon define a deployment as either forty-five consecutive days or ninety non-consecutive days in a deployed status. Temporary duty orders also qualify towards the ninety-day time requirement. For deployments exceeding 45–90 days, a single Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon will be awarded for the entire time frame rather than issuing multiple awards for the same period of deployed service.
For those service members who serve in designated combat zones (those receiving hostile fire pay) while deployed (with or without actually participating in actual combat), a gold frame, which the Air Force refers to as a gold border, may be attached to the AFESR basic ribbon. The gold border is issued as a one-time award only, regardless of the number of combat operations in which a service member is involved.
The Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with gold border may also be awarded to certain "over-the horizon" combat assignments, such as remotely piloted vehicle operators for employing a long-range weapon into a combat zone. It is therefore possible to earn the gold border even when stationed at a secure military installation in the United States geographically separated from the battlefield by thousands of miles. Such personnel, however, must have first earned the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon before the ribbon can be upgraded with a gold border.
Additional awards of the Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon are denoted by oak leaf clusters and the award is retroactive to October 1, 1999.
The center stripe is light blue and stands for Air Force capability. From this center stripe outward on each side, the narrow white stripe stands for integrity; ultramarine blue represents worldwide deployment; Air Force yellow stands for excellence, and the last two stripes (scarlet and blue) stand for the United States.