Special Forces Patch

Heraldry

 

 

SSI

Shoulder Sleeve Insignia 

Designed by Captain John W. Frye of the Original 10th Special Forces Group that had forward deployed to Bad Tolz. 

Background: The shoulder sleeve insignia was originally approved on 22 Aug 1955

It was amended to add an airborne tab on 20 Nov 1958.

Description: On a teal blue arrowhead 3 1/8 inches (7.94cm) in height and 2 inches (5.08cm) in width, point up, a yellow dagger, its blade surmounted by three yellow lightning flashes, bendwise in pale, all inset 1/8 inch (.32cm) from the edge of the arrowhead. On a tab placed 3/16 (.48cm) inch above the insignia, the word "AIRBORNE" in yellow letters on a black background.

Teal Blue Arrow

Arrow - Stealth and Field Crafts of the Indian Scouts

Teal Blue - US Army Branch Assigned

3 1/8 inches (7.94cm) in height and 2 inches (5.08cm) in width

Symbolism: The arrowhead alludes to the American Indian's basic skills in which Special Forces personnel are trained to a high degree. 

 

Fighting Knife

Adapted from the Unit Knife of the First Special Service Force

Uniquely designed V 42 Fighting Knife by Case for the First Special Service Force

Symbolism: The dagger represents the unconventional nature of Special Forces operations.

 Description: A yellow dagger, its blade surmounted by three yellow lightning flashes, bendwise in pale, all inset 1/8 inch (.32cm) from the edge of the arrowhead. 

Three Lightning Bolts

Methods of Infiltration

Land - Sea - Air

Description: Three yellow lightning flashes, bendwise in pale, all inset 1/8 inch (.32cm) from the edge of the arrowhead. 

Symbolism: The three lightning flashes, their ability to strike rapidly by Air, Water or Land.

 

Airborne Tab

Successful Completion of  Airborne School and Airborne Qualifications

Background: The Airborne Tab Insignia was approved on 20 Nov 1958.

Description: On a tab placed 3/16 (.48cm) inch above the insignia, the word "AIRBORNE" in yellow letters on a black background.

Special Forces Qualification Tab

Successful Completion of  Special Forces Qualification Course.

Description: The Special Forces qualification tab is for wear on the Army green uniform is 3 1/4 inches wide with a teal blue embroidered background and border and yellow embroidered letters.

Date Approved: The cloth tab was approved by the Army’s Chief of Staff on 17 June 1983, based on a request from the Commander of USAJFKSWC. Criteria, wear policy and authorization to wear the tab was announced in DA Message 061300Z, October 1983, Subject: Special Forces Tab. On 25 November 1984, the Army Chief of Staff approved a metal replica of the embroidered tab for wear on the mess/dress uniforms.

Subdued Tab: The subdued tab is embroidered with olive drab background and border with black letters. The tab is not authorized in subdued metal.

Miniature Badges: The metal badge authorized for wear on the Army blue or white uniform and green shirt is 1 9/16 inches wide with a teal blue enameled background and gold letters and border. The dress miniature for wear on the mess/dress uniforms is 1 inch wide.

Symbolism: The colors of the tab are the same colors as the shoulder sleeve insignia authorized for Special Forces Groups.

Award Eligibility: 
1. The Commander, U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center (USAJFKSWC), Fort Bragg, NC 28307-5000, may award the Special Forces Tab to any individual who has successfully completed the Special Forces Qualification Course or the Special Forces Officer Course.
2. The Special Forces Tab may be Awarded to any person on Active Duty, active status in the Reserve Components, in Retired status, or Honorably Discharged who meets the appropriate criteria listed in AR 600-8-22.

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