WHEREAS General George Washington, at Newburg-on-the-Hudson, on August 7,1782, during the War of the Revolution, issued an Order establishing the Honorary Badge of Distinction, otherwise known as the Badge of Military Merit or Decoration of the Purple Heart; and
WHEREAS the award of that decoration ceased with the closing of the War of the Revolution and was revived on February 22, 1932, out of respect to the memory and military achievements of General George Washington, by War Department General Orders No. .3:
NOW, THEREFORE, by virtue of the authority vested in me as President of the United States and as Commander in Chief of the armed forces of the United States, it is ordered as follows:
1. The Secretary of a military department, or the Secretary of the Treasury with regard to the Coast Guard when not operating as a service in the Navy, shall, in the name of the President of the United States, award the Purple Heart, with suitable ribbons and appurtenances, to any member of an armed force under the jurisdiction of that department and any civilian national of the United States who, while serving under competent authority in any capacity with an armed force of that department, has been, or may hereafter be, wounded
(a) in any action against an enemy of the United States;
(b) in any action with an opposing armed force of a foreign country in which the armed forces of the United States are or have been engaged;
(c) while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party;
(d) as the result of an act of any such enemy or opposing armed force; or
(e) as tile result of an act of any hostile foreign force.
2. The Secretary of a military department, or the Secretary of the Treasury, shall, in the name of the President of the United States, award the Purple Heart, with suitable ribbons and appurtenances, posthumously, to any person covered by, and under the circumstances described in, paragraph 1 who, after April 5, 1917, has been, or may hereafter be, killed, or who has died or may hereafter die after being wounded.
3. A wound for which the award is made must have required treatment by a medical officer.
4. The Purple Heart shall be forwarded to the next of kin of any person entitled to the posthumous award, without respect to whether. a previous award has been made to such person, except that if the award results from service before December 7, 1941, the Purple Heart shall be forwarded to such next of kin upon his application therefor to the Secretary of the department concerned.
5. Except as authorized in paragraph 4, not more than one Purple Heart shall he awarded to any person, but for each subsequent award a Gold Star, or other suitable device, shall be awarded to be worn with the Purple Heart as prescribed by appropriate regulations to be issued by the Secretary of the department concerned.
6. When authorized by the Secretary of the department concerned, while the award of the Purple Heart may be made by subordinate military commanders, or such other appropriate officers as the Secretary concerned may designate.
7. The Secretary of the department concerned may prescribe such regulations as he considers appropriate to carry out this order. The regulations of the Secretaries of the departments with respect to the award of the Purple Heart shall, so far as practicable, be uniform, and those of the military departments shall be subject to the approval of the Secretary of Defense.
8. This order supersedes Executive Order No. 10409 of November 12, 1952, entitled "Award of the Purple Heart to Persons Serving with the Navy, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard of the United States". However, existing regulations prescribed pursuant to that order, together with regulations prescribed under the authority of General Orders No. 3, War Department, February 22, 1932, shall, so far as they are not inconsistent with this order, remain in effect until modified or revoked by regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the department concerned under this order.
JOHN F. KENNEDY
THE WHITE HOUSE,
April 25, 1962