Legion of Merit Medal
Awarded for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services and achievements. The decoration is issued both to United States military personnel and to military and political figures of foreign governments. The Legion of Merit is one of only two United States decorations to be issued as a neck order (the other being the Medal of Honor), and the only United States decoration which may be issued in award degrees (much like an Order of chivalry or certain Orders of Merit). The Legion of Merit is seventh in the order of precedence of U.S. military decorations, and is worn after the Defense Superior Service Medal and before the Distinguished Flying Cross. The award is given for service rendered in a clearly exceptional manner. Performance of duties normal to the grade, branch, specialty or assignment, and experience of an individual is not an adequate basis for this award. For service not related to actual war the term "key individual" applies to a narrower range of positions than in time of war and requires evidence of significant achievement. In peacetime, service should be in the nature of a special requirement or of an extremely difficult duty performed in an unprecedented and clearly exceptional manner. However, the award may be justified by exceptionally meritorious service in a succession of important positions.