Star of Courage

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The Star of Courage is awarded only for acts of conspicuous courage in circumstances of great peril and may be awarded posthumously. All Canadian citizens, both civilians and members of the Canadian Forces, are eligible for the award of the Star of Courage. Persons who are not Canadian citizens may receive this award if they perform an act of bravery in Canada, or perform an act of bravery outside of Canada that merits recognition by Canada as an act in the interest of Canada.[1]


A gold bar with a gold maple leaf in the centre is awarded for subsequent acts of courage.


A silver star of four points with a maple leaf in each of the angles. The star is 44-mm across.


In the centre, a gold maple leaf is surrounded by a gold laurel wreath.


In the upper arm, a crown with the Royal Cypher below (EIIR) and below that, the word COURAGE. The recipient's name and date of the incident are engraved below the word COURAGE.


A small ball on the top point has a large ring attached through which the ribbon passes. The medal is worn on the left breast by men or may be worn from a bow on the left shoulder by women.


The light crimson (red) ribbon is 32-mm wide with two blue stripes, 5-mm wide and 3-mm from each edge. A gold maple leaf is worn on the ribbon in undress if a bar is awarded.


Because the Star of Courage does not give the same initials in English and French, the post-nominal letters used are SC for Anglophone and EC for Francophone recipients.


The award was established on 01 May 1972 and first awarded on 20 July 1972.


There have been 458 Stars (including 93 posthumously) awarded as of 5 January 2019 including one to the US Coast Guard and one to the Royal Navy. There have been no bars awarded.

There has been 1 Signals and C&E Branch recipient of the SC. Please see Star of Courage - Signals Recipients for details of the individual.


  1. Canadian Orders, Decorations and Medals, 6th Edition. Surgeon Captain John Blatherwick CM, CStJ, OBC, CD