The War Medal 1939-45 was awarded for 28 days of full-time service in the Armed Forces between 3 September 1939 and 2 September 1945. Operational and non-operational service may be counted, providing that it was of 28 days or more duration.
In the Merchant Navy, there is a requirement that the 28 days should have been served at sea.
A member qualifies for the award where service was brought to an end by death, wounds or other disabilities due to service or by cessation of hostilities on 2 September 1945.
The War Medal 1939-45 is awarded to Australian Civilian Personnel who served afloat with the United States Army Small Ships Section between 8 December 1941 and 2 September 1945. Eligibility is the same as that for Merchant Navy personnel.
The medal is cupro-nickel with the crowned effigy of King George VI on the obverse.
The reverse has a lion standing on a double-headed dragon. The top of the reverse shows the dates 1939 and 1945.
The ribbon colors of red, white and blue represent the colors of the Union Flag.