Custom military coins for the Coast Guard help to remind recipients of the sea-going force’s long-standing tradition of excellence. The main responsibility of the Coast Guard is to protect America’s ports, waterways and coastlines against interior and exterior threats, and it has been carrying out this mission since it was established in 1790. When required, they can also serve overseas to bolster military forces. Members of the Coast Guard are known for their courage and commitment to their mission, as well as for embodying the virtue of honor. Their motto, Semper Paratus, means “Always Ready” and highlights their vigilance and readiness to fulfill their mission, whether at home or abroad.
Custom coins are better known as challenge coins and have long been the way members of the military identified themselves as being part of a unit, as well as a reward for meritorious service. In fact, some stories even put the origins of challenge coins back to Ancient Rome, when members of a legion who performed well in battle would receive a special coin along with their pay, which bore their legion’s mark. Although these coins could be traded, many soldiers opted to keep them as a memento.
These days, custom military coins are considered as traditions that continue to be upheld by many units of the Armed Forces, which have custom coins minted with their unit insignia and motto. These coins may be given to all members of the unit or used as a reward when they have performed above and beyond the call of duty. They are available in a range of metal styles, ranging from gold and silver to brass and copper. And they are given away not only to enlisted men and officers but also to civilian supporters of the military, as well as anybody else that commanders feel merits the honor of receiving one of these custom coins. Being presented with one of these coins is a source of pride since it highlights the service you have given to America’s brave fighting men.
Helping to contribute to the continued popularity of custom military coins is the fact that improvements in minting technology have made these coins more affordable and easier to design and produce. Designs can easily be made on a computer or drawn on a piece of paper and then realized by professional designers at the minter. Once the design of the coin has been finalized, the minter can easily produce multiple coins for a relatively low price. And, of course, prices go down even more if you order your coins in bulk.
The improved technology also means that custom military coins no longer need to be the familiar circular shape but can be any shape desired. They can be in the shape of a badge or an anchor, for example. Having a challenge coin with a unique shape helps it stand out as well as enhance its collectability. In addition, other features can be added to the coin, such as different styles of edges, engraved three-dimensional designs and text on the faces and different types of finishes. Using a combination of these features helps to make the challenge coin more distinctive and attractive. To highlight that they are a limited issue, challenge coins can also be numbered.
As the Coast Guard continues its proud tradition of being America’s Guardian of the Sea, custom military coins offer a great way for collectors to show appreciation for the bravery they demonstrate in fulfilling their mission. Coast Guard challenge coins also let the estimated 42,300 active members display their pride in being a part of the country’s oldest continuous seagoing force.