The Prestigious Challenge Coins
Posted by dunitzsantrino on November 28th, 2014
A Challenge coin is a small coin bearing an organization’s insignia and carried by its members. Challenge coins are normally presented to a person in recognition of a special achievement. The coin is given to members of a group or unit or by the superiors.There are various stories detailing the origin of challenge coins, the most common one is that originated during World War I. A young pilot was captured by the Germans, being on the enemy borderline when his aircraft was damaged in a ground fire and taken for execution and fortunately for him his medallion saved him from being executed and instead given a bottle of wine. Hence it became a tradition to carry the medallion by all the members and to ensure they do so, challenges were made and if the medallion was not produced, the challenged would have to buy wine for all. Challenge coins are presented by unit commanders to a member or soldier in recognition of an achievement and also exchanged in recognition of a visit to an organization. Normally the coin is given to prove one’s membership when challenged and it is carried by service members too.
Custom Challenge Coins are diverse and unique coins made for a group. It is custom made to order, crafted from metal of choice, artwork and design also is made according to the choice of the group or organization. The coins are of different size and shape. The price for the coins also differs according to the material used and the time taken to make it and various other factors. Custom Challenge Coins are used to honor, and reward individuals for their accomplishments. Since customized, the keepsake is highly valued amongst military and non military organizations. These are a symbol of strength and commitment and build relationships amongst people in a group.
Today Challenge Coins are carried by Airmen, Soldiers, Marines, and firefighters to identify the bearer as a member of a particular unit or group.. The tradition of the coin challenge is meant to be a source of morale in a unit or group and forcing the challenge can cause reverse effect. The act of challenging is called a coin check. A challenge can be made at any time by a challenger of a group by placing his challenge coin on the table or flashing the coin and if the challenged does not produce his coin he is liable to buy wine for all. It is a closely guarded tradition.These coins are now used by various Organizations. Only those who have this coin appreciates the value and meaning of possessing it.
The gift of Challenge Coins builds morale to a team or person, with the knowledge that their efforts are recognized and appreciated