Order of Military Merit (South Korea)

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The Order of Military Merit (Hangul: 무공훈장, Hanja: 武功勳章) is the primary military decoration awarded by the South Korean government.

Classes of the Order[edit]

The order is awarded in one of five classes, as follows.

1st Class – Taegeuk Cordon[edit]

Taeguk Cordon Medal.png 1st class: 太極, Taegeuk[1] (Taegeuk Cordon or Grand Cordon) – Taegeuk Cordon of the Order of Military Merit is the highest decoration for military bravery and valour awarded by the government of South Korea. Members of the armed forces of South Korea, as well of its allies, are eligible for the award.

Document of award of the Taegeuk Cordon to the Unknown Dead of Greece for the Greek participation in the Korean War

Notable recipients[edit]

2nd Class – Eulji Cordon[edit]

Col. Edwin A. Doss' Eulji Medal with Silver Star (1952-63 design)

Eulji Cordon Medal.png 2nd class: 乙支, Eulji[3] (Field Marshal Lord Eulji Cordon)

Notable recipients[edit]

3rd Class – Chungmu Cordon[edit]

Chungmu Cordon Medal.png 3rd class: 忠武, Chungmu (Lord High Admiral Chungmu Cordon)

Notable recipients[edit]

4th Class – Hwarang Cordon[edit]

Hwarang Cordon Medal.png 4th class: 花郞, Hwarang (Youth Military Corps Cordon)

Notable recipients[edit]

  • Major Steven Vorhees Boylan (later Col. US Army retired) For direct support of the 10th Korean "Meng Ho" Division in the central coast region of Viet Nam in 1966.
  • Captain Mederith J. Larson (later Major US Army retired), Corps of Engineers, United States Army, a member of the United States Military Advisory Group to the Republic of Korea, for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding service as an Assistant Advisor to the 3rd Infantry Division, Army of the Republic of Korea, during 9 October 1950 to 8 June 1951. "Captain Larson, while carrying out his grave responsibility, displayed superior technique and outstanding military knowledge; his devotion to duty set a brilliant example for the Republic of Korea Army. The exceptionally meritorious service of Captain Larson reflects upon himself and the military service of the United Nations." (Award signed by Kim Tchun Kyung, Colonel AGD, The Adjutant General). Major M.J. Larson also received the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts for service during World War II and the Korean War. He lived in Washington and died January 31, 2005.
  • Sergeant First Class Richard E. Falk (Love Company, 31st Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division) For valor during 17-18 April 1953 in the Battle of Pork Chop Hill, Republic of Korea. History of this battle is described in S.L.A. Marshall's book, Pork Chop Hill. SFC Falk also received the Silver Star (G.O. #245 Hq. 7th Infantry Div.) and the Purple Heart. He was the youngest First Sgt. in training Company G, 123rd Infantry Regt, Ft. Lewis, WA, 1953. Montana resident, currently living in Hamilton, MT

5th Class – Inheon Cordon[edit]

Inheon Cordon Medal.png 5th class: 仁憲, Inheon[4] (Field Marshal Lord Inheon Cordon)

Notable recipients[edit]


  1. ^ 'Taegeuk' is also transliterated as 'Taeguk'
  2. ^ http://www.posteaglenewspaper.com/republic-of-south-korea-awards-four-u-s-veterans-its-nations-highest-military-award/
  3. ^ 'Eulji' is also transliterated as 'Ulchi'
  4. ^ 'Inheon' is also transliterated as 'Inhun'

External links[edit]