Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

December 06, 2010 16:00 ET

First Operational Service Medals Presented

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 6, 2010) - Today at Rideau Hall His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, presented the first Operational Service Medals (OSM) to 43 Canadian Forces (CF) personnel and two civilian employees, recognizing those who have served on important missions overseas who would not otherwise be recognized by a Canadian honour.

"The awarding of the Operational Service Medal demonstrates our government's commitment to recognize the important work that Canadians, especially the men and women in uniform, do on behalf of our great nation," said the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence. "The creation of this medal honours those who were deployed overseas under dangerous circumstances."

Eligible recipients of this new medal, created on July 5, 2010, include members of the CF, Canadian police forces and allied forces working as integral parts of those forces, as well as Canadian civilians deployed overseas under the authority of the CF or Canadian police forces to provide full-time direct support to military or police operations.

"It is an honour to be here on this special day to recognize the work of these men and women," said General Walter Natynczyk, Chief of the Defence Staff. "They have served Canada, made many sacrifices and brought peace and hope to troubled lands. They made a difference in the lives of many victims of violence. They are justifiably proud of this recognition." 
The OSM is issued with different ribbons identifying specific theatres of operations, including South-West Asia, Sierra Leone (Op SCULPTURE), Haiti (Op HALO), and Sudan (Op AUGURAL). In addition, a HUMANITAS ribbon was created to recognize humanitarian service, which includes Canada's most recent relief efforts in Haiti (Op HESTIA), and an EXPEDITION ribbon covers smaller operations conducted in dangerous circumstances outside of Canada.

Notes to editor / news director: For more information on the OSM and on the creation of new honours, please visit the Governor General of Canada's website:

A fact sheet with pictures of the OSM is available at the following site:

For more information on military honours, please visit the Department of National Defence Web site for CF Honours and Awards:

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