Established on January 1, 1953, the Hawaii National Guard Medal for Merit honors Hawaii National Guard members who carry out exceptional service or perform notable feats of courage or heroism, typically involving risk of life.
Composed of the Hawaii Army National Guard and Hawaii Air National Guard, the Hawaii National Guard has seen incarnations as a nineteenth-century militia and the Hawaii Territorial Guard before establishment in its current form in 1942. The Army and Air components are both headquartered in Honolulu; the latter was officially recognized by the federal government on November 4, 1946.
The ribbon features a brown section on the right with a thin vertical green stripe toward the edge and a green section on the left with a thin vertical brown stripe toward the edge.
Subsequent awards may be indicated by silver Kahili devices.