What is a Challenge Coin?
People in military are expected to work hard and even some go the extra mile of surpassing those expectations. There are cases in which the productivity, efficiency and act of bravery of soldiers are deemed exceptional and also, they’re thanked properly by their superiors. As a matter of fact, a simple handshake as well as verbal expression of saying thanks is more than enough to these brave men.
Military coins on the other hand is another way that soldiers can be thanked for their remarkable commitment. These coins carry a special meaning and at the same time, irreplaceable. When a soldier has returned from their deployment, he/she usually has a challenge coin along with the collection of their most prized possessions such as dog tags, photos and wedding rings.
Military challenge coins can be found in various colors, sizes and even shapes; not only that, they are customized in order to represent the situation it is presented. A lot of soldiers are carrying challenge coins everywhere they go, even in the shower. Leaders have different ways of designing their coin and so, expect that it varies depending on the owner like for instance, a command sergeant has a regular battalion coin that is representing his group and a separate personal coin with engravings of his rank and name. When presenting the coin to you, it shows personal expression of saying thanks from leader to one of his men for the hard work.
But it doesn’t mean that you must be an officer or even a leader to receive and give these military coins. It’s for the reason that even regular soldiers can give and receive it. For an example, you can get coins from Post Exchange and award it to your fellow soldiers for the deeds they made or specific actions. Actually, coins with unique designs are more valuable but even if it has come from mass production coins purchased in Post Exchange, when given to someone, it can have a new meaning. You must know that challenge coins can be given as well outside of the chain of commands. There are instances that someone in one chain of command who’s interacting on a regular basis with another might recognize another person’s contribution and can do so with challenge coin.
Despite the fact that coins represent serious situations, they are often part of a more relaxed tradition. At times, they’re used to challenge other soldiers in the battalion. If for example soldiers are out in the field and have a challenge coin, it can be used for challenging other soldiers in producing their coin there and then. Then whoever failed to produce one has to buy everyone a round of drinks.