- "The day I picked up the Crescent, I could have flown without thrusters and knocked out TIE Interceptors just by spitting at them."
- ―Wedge Antilles
The Kalidor Crescent was a prestigious award given to those who served in the military forces of the Alliance to Restore the Republic and the New Republic. The medal was named after a winged predator from the planet Davnar II and was only given to pilots who had performed beyond the call of duty, displaying both skill and bravery in combat. For continued acts of heroism, recipients could earn upgraded classes of the award. Recipients of the Kalidor Crescent and its variations were among the most famed members of the Alliance Military, including Wedge Antilles, Keyan Farlander, Nien Nunb, and Jek Tono Porkins.
- "Your exploits in the last mission have earned you the Kalidor Crescent, the most prestigious individual mission award. Well done."
- ―Commander Zaletta
The Kalidor Crescent comprised a large, weighty medallion suspended from a wide ribbon. The intricately engraved medallion was made of gold-plated alloy in the shape of an inverted crescent with a smooth gemstone held at the bottom by the points of the crescent. The design was intended to resemble a kalidor in inverted flight, with its curving wings surrounding the gemstone. The color of the gemstone varied depending on which branch of the Alliance Military the recipient served in, with a green gem used for the Alliance Fleet and Alliance Starfighter Corps and a blue gem used for the Alliance Army. Amber gems were used in the Kalidor Crescent by the time of the New Republic. Engraved on the reverse side of the medallion in Aurebesh were the words "For Conspicuous Gallantry."
Above the medallion was a royal blue ribbon with a red stripe along both edges which was a single piece for around ten centimeters before splitting in two with each piece ending in half of an alloy clasp. Attached to the ribbon above the medallion was a large likeness of a kalidor made of the same material as the medallion itself. The kalidor was depicted looking to right with its wings spread wide. The medal also came with a longer ceremonial silk ribbon, which was used to place the medal around the recipient's neck. However, the medal was not generally worn for everyday duties and many recipients stored the award in a metal case when not wearing it.
For each subsequent award of the Kalidor Crescent to a previous recipient, individuals were given a small embellishment for their existing medal. In order of precedence, these were:
- Bronze Cluster: The Bronze Cluster was a small group of three bronze stars which were attached to the ribbon between the gem and the kalidor.
- Silver Talons: The Silver Talons added a set of silver claws to the kalidor mold on the ribbon.
- Silver Scimitar: The Silver Scimatar was a small figure of a curved sword which attached to the top bar of the ribbon.
- Golden Wings: The Golden Wings were a set of solid gold wings which were attached above and to either side of the kalidor.
- Diamond Eyes: The Diamond Eyes were a pair of small diamonds which were attached to the ribbon above the kalidor. As of the start of Operation Strike Fear, nobody had ever earned the Diamond Eyes.
- Kenobi Medallion: The Kenobi Medallion was a bronze device.
The Kalidor Crescent was introduced by the Alliance to Restore the Republic during the early Galactic Civil War to recognize starfighter pilots who had displayed exceptional feats of both bravery and skill. The medal was named after the famed kalidor, a winged predator from the planet Davnar II, to commemorate its grace and power. The bird's precise aerial maneuvers represented the standards expected of Rebel starfighter pilots. Although it was originally intended for members of the Alliance Starfighter Corps, the medal's use evolved over time and it came to be awarded to those who served the Alliance in other disciplines, including members of the Alliance Army.
Awarded for "conspicuous and intrepid gallantry at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty," the Kalidor Crescent was the highest honor awarded by the Rebel Alliance, rated above the Corellian Cross and Illudium Star. Nominations for the medal had to be submitted by either one of the recipient's superior officers or a senator or other civilian representative of the Alliance Civil Government. Such was the importance of the award that it only presented by the Alliance's Chief of State, Mon Mothma, or the Supreme Commander of the Alliance Military.
As a result of the high standards required for nomination, the Kalidor Crescent was usually awarded posthumously. Living recipients of the award were regarded with great respect and achieved a degree of celebrity status among their peers. Living recipients who were still in active service could be awarded the Kalidor Crescent again for further acts of gallantry and heroism. Prior to the Battle of Yavin in 0 BBY there were a total of five such further decorations: the Bronze Cluster, the Silver Talons, the Silver Scimitar, the Golden Wings, and the Diamond Eyes. Following the Alliance's victory against the Death Star I at the Battle of Yavin, the Rebels created the Kenobi Medallion as a further enhancement to the Kalidor Crescent. The Kenobi Medallion was only initially awarded posthumously to those who had sacrificed their lives in the fight against the Galactic Empire and was first presented to the casualties among Yavin Base's pilots. The Kenobi Medallion was later presented to surviving personnel.
The Medal of Alderaan was later commissioned by Mon Mothma to honor specific heroes of the Alliance and held a level of prestige similar to that of the Kalidor Crescent. After the death of Emperor Palpatine, and the rise of the New Republic, the medal continued to be awarded to members of the New Republic Defense Force, and remained a mark of prestige.
Wedge Antilles was the son of Jagged and Zena Antilles, operators of a refueling platform on the Gus Treta space station. By the time he was seventeen, Antilles had become a capable pilot and often worked with the smuggler Booster Terrik. He was aboard Terrik's Pulsar Skate when the pirate freighter Buzzzer attempted to flee a CorSec patrol without disengaging from his parents' refueling platform first. Antilles's parents were killed when the station caught fire. Antilles eventually joined the Rebel Alliance, serving as a pilot in Red Squadron. Based out of Yavin Base, Antilles was one of the few survivors of the Battle of Yavin, getting half a dozen kills during the battle before damage to his X-wing forced him to withdraw.
After the Battle of Yavin, Antilles jointly founded Rogue Squadron with Luke Skywalker, and Commander Antilles took command of the squadron after the Battle of Hoth in 3 ABY. At the Battle of Endor, Antilles saw combat against a second Death Star. Accompanied by the Millennium Falcon, Antilles flew his X-wing into the battlestation's superstructure and the two ships destroyed its reactor core.
Antilles remained in command of Rogue Squadron after the Alliance became the New Republic, playing an important part in the liberation of Coruscant and the defeat of the Director of Imperial Intelligence Ysanne Isard, before leaving to found Wraith Squadron. He eventually accepted a promotion to general and continued to serve the New Republic into the Yuuzhan Vong War. Antilles was awarded the Kalidor Crescent at some point before 7 ABY.
Ace Azzameen was originally a freighter pilot for his family's business, Twin Suns Transport Services. When his father and older brother were killed while assisting the Rebellion shortly after the Battle of Hoth, Azzameen, his brother Emon, and sister Aeron found themselves on the run from the Empire. Azzameen joined the Alliance as a starfighter pilot, serving aboard the Mon Calamari Star Cruisers Defiance and Liberty, and participating in several battles, including the defeat of the TIE Experimental Project. He later worked with Luke Skywalker, Dash Rendar, and the Bothan Spynet to capture the plans to the Death Star II. When the Alliance attacked the battlestation at the Battle of Endor, Azzameen was assigned to the crew of the Millennium Falcon under General Lando Calrissian. The Falcon played a critical part in the battle, entering the Death Star's superstructure and destroying its reactor core. Azzameen received the Kalidor Crescent at some time during his first year in the Alliance.
- "Congratulations on behalf of the Rebel Alliance."
- ―Mon Mothma presents the Kalidor Crescent to Keyan Farlander
Keyan Farlander was a native of the Outer Rim world of Agamar. After his parents were killed in an Imperial attack, Farlander attended a recruitment rally by Alliance Chief of State Mon Mothma and joined the Alliance Starfighter Corps shortly after the Battle of Turkana. Serving in Red Squadron aboard the Mon Calamari Star Cruiser Independence, Farlander participated in many early battles of the Galactic Civil War, helping to defeat Operation Strike Fear, capture the EF76 Nebulon-B escort frigate Priam, and destroy the Imperial-class Star Destroyer Intrepid. He was one of several pilots transferred from the Independence to Yavin 4 ahead of the Battle of Yavin and one of the few survivors of that battle.
Farlander later aided in the development of the B-wing starfighter and protected Rebel forces as they moved to their new base on Hoth. Farlander was awarded the Kalidor Crescent at some point prior to the Battle of Hoth in a ceremony presided over by Mon Mothma. He later fought against the second Death Star at the Battle of Endor, before serving the New Republic during the Yuuzhan Vong War, both as a general and Jedi Knight.
Toryn Farr was the chief communications officer assigned to the command center of Echo Base on Hoth when the Galactic Empire attacked in 3 ABY. Farr gave the order for the base's ion cannon to open fire on the approaching Star Destroyers and was among the last Rebel personnel to evacuate the base aboard the GR-75 medium transport Bright Hope, along with her sister, Samoc. When the ship was disabled while attempting to escape, Farr found herself as the senior officer out of the 108 surviving passengers and took charge of the situation. Farr decided to use the ship's three escape pods to carry eighteen survivors back to Hoth in the hopes that they could survive until the Alliance came looking for them. Choosing not to go herself, Farr remained aboard the Bright Hope to help the remaining survivors destroy all sensitive data before the Imperials could board and seize it. However, when the bounty hunters Zuckuss and 4-LOM boarded the Bright Hope, Farr was able to convince them to carry the remaining ninety survivors safely to the Rebel underground on Darlyn Boda. Her bravery and initiative under duress led General Carlist Rieekan to award her the Kalidor Crescent, along with a promotion to commander. Her determination to save as many Echo Base personnel as possible was further demonstrated by her request to lead a Special Forces team back to the ice-world in an attempt to recover her comrades from the escape pods.
Reyé Hollis was raised on Naboo and became a sergeant in the Alliance Army during the Galactic Civil War. By 3 ABY, he was assigned to Echo Base on Hoth, serving under Colonel Ledick Firest, and had already been awarded the Kalidor Crescent. During the Battle of Hoth, Hollis further distinguished himself by rescuing a squad of Rebel troopers who had been cut off from their comrades, saving two medics from an advancing All Terrain Scout Transport, and was wounded while covering his company's retreat. His actions earned him a Kenobi Medallion for his Kalidor Crescent, along with a promotion.
Halley Kadorto was born during the final decades of the Galactic Republic and became a veteran of the Clone Wars. After the rise of the Galactic Empire, Kadorto joined the fledgling Rebel Alliance as a pilot, surviving many missions and narrowly escaping death several times in the then-unreliable Rebel starfighters. Kadorto was awarded the Kalidor Crescent for his role in the rescue of Mon Calamari slaves as they waited to be transferred to the Imperial-class Star Destroyer Warrior above Mon Calamari. The Rebels had planned to complete the operation before the Warrior arrived, but its early arrival jeopardized the mission as the Star Destroyer launched TIE/sa bombers to destroy the freighters carrying the slaves and keep them from joining the Rebels. Kadorto responded quickly, singlehandedly eliminating waves of TIEs until Rebel forces could rescue the slaves.
A native of Sullust, Nien Nunb worked as a cargo pilot for SoroSuub Corporation until the company's Imperial allegiances prompted him to quit his job. When the company retaliated by attempting to have him killed, Nunb became a pirate, conducting raids of SoroSuub shipments and giving what he stole to the Rebel Alliance. With the help of his old friend and prominent member of the Alliance, Sian Tevv, Nunb was accepted into the Alliance Fleet and gained a reputation as one of the Rebellion's most trusted pilots. When the Alliance attacked the Death Star II over Endor, Nunb was selected to copilot the Millennium Falcon with Lando Calrissian. The two took the ship into the unfinished battlestation's superstructure and destroyed its reactor core. Nunb's actions at Endor earned him the Kalidor Crescent. Nunb continued to serve the Alliance after Endor before eventually leaving piloting to take a position as Chief Administrator of the Kessel spice mines, after Calrissian bought the facility. He continued to hold this position into the Yuuzhan Vong War.
Jek Tono Porkins
Jek Porkins was originally a trader from the Bestine system and a champion T-16 skyhopper pilot on his homeworld of Bestine IV. He had not long gone into business for himself when the Empire decided to establish a base on Bestine IV, forcing the natives to abandon their home and leaving them to wander nomadically through the system. The displaced people of Bestine were offered a home by the fledgling Rebel Alliance, but most rejected the offer, not wanting to leave their home system. Porkins, however, saw that the Rebellion offered him the chance to strike back at the Empire and hoped to one day return and liberate his homeworld. He joined the Alliance as a starfighter pilot and, in less than forty hours of combat flight, gained sixteen confirmed kills. However, his true skill lay in performing strafing runs.
Lieutenant Porkins was stationed at Tierfon Rebel Base, along with Wes Janson. When Janson was called to Yavin Base to fight the Death Star, but was unable to go due to illness, Porkins took his place. Porkins fought in the Battle of Yavin as part of Red Squadron, but a mechanical malfunction left him unable to evade enemy fire. His T-65 X-wing starfighter was hit by an Imperial weapons emplacement, killing Porkins instantly. Porkins was posthumously awarded the Kenobi Medallion for his part in the battle, which was hung with pride in the pilots' lounge at Tierfon Base.
- "Recently, you were placed in the unenviable position of attempting to save a pilot who had suffered catastrophic damage. I'm not certain that you've ever resigned yourself to the truth that her death does not constitute failure on your part. As a matter of fact, a review of the recordings of the incident by Starfighter Command confirms the fact that your effort demonstrated both unusual courage and enviable piloting skills—a lesser pilot would have crashed in such an attempt. Therefore, I am pleased to be able to present you with a first for Wraith Squadron: the Kalidor Crescent."
- ―Wedge Antilles presents the Kalidor Crescent to Kell Tainer
Kell Tainer was born Kell Doran on Alderaan. When his father, Kissek Doran, a pilot with the Rebel Alliance, turned coward during a mission and was killed by Wes Janson before he could compromise the operation, Tainer's family changed their surname. Tainer moved to Sluis Van and eventually joined the New Republic. Tainer trained as a demolitions expert and served with Page's Commandos under Judder Page before transferring to New Republic Starfighter Command to train as a pilot. Two crash-landings during training, both of which he blamed on mechanical failure, threatened to prevent him becoming a pilot, but he was given an opportunity to revive his career when Wedge Antilles recruited him into Wraith Squadron. Tainer was dismayed to find he would be serving with Wes Janson, whom he still blamed for his father's death. During his time with Wraith Squadron, Tainer was able to overcome the shame he felt about his father, and to accept that Janson was not to blame for what happened.
When Wraith Squadron fought a group of pirates operating out of the Blood Nest in the M2398 system, Jesmin Ackbar's X-wing was damaged by enemy fire, leaving her inertial compensator damaged and preventing her from both keeping control of the ship and ejecting to safety. As Ackbar's fighter plummeted towards the surface of the nearby moon, Tainer attempted to alter her course by using his strike foils to nudge her ship away from the surface. Though he was unable to save Ackbar, Tainer's actions earned him the Kalidor Crescent.
Behind the scenes
The Kalidor Crescent was created for the 1993 LucasArts video game Star Wars: X-Wing. Unlike other medals in the game, which were awarded at the end of each campaign, the Kalidor Crescent and its embellishments were awarded in order based on the player's score in individual missions as follows:
- Kalidor Crescent: 10,000
- Bronze Cluster: 12,000
- Silver Talons: 14,000
- Silver Scimitar: 16,000
- Golden Wings: 18,000
- Diamond Eyes: 20,000
The medal also featured in X-wing's 1999 sequel Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance. This time, however, the medal was not awarded based on scores in individual missions, but rather on the total score from bonus goals achieved throughout the game. As the player's total bonus points reached certain levels, they would be awarded the additions to the basic Kalidor Crescent.
In both X-wing and X-wing Alliance, the player characters, Keyan Farlander and Ace Azzameen, can only be awarded the Kalidor Crescent and its various upgrades based on player performance. This article assumes that players complete all aspects of the game, achieving the medals in the process.
The only recipient confirmed in the games was Halley Kadorto, who received the medal for one of the missions recreated in X-wing's historical simulator. Kadorto's medal was also mentioned in Rusel DeMaria's novella, The Farlander Papers, which accompanied the game. The Farlander Papers also provided background information on the medal, which was later repeated in DeMaria's X-Wing: The Official Strategy Guide.
The Kalidor Crescent later appeared in Aaron Allston's 1998 novel, X-Wing: Wraith Squadron, in which Kell Tainer is awarded the medal. The book also established Wedge Antilles as a recipient, though no details of why he was awarded the medal are known. In The New Essential Guide to Characters by Daniel Wallace, Nien Nunb is established as being awarded the medal following his actions at the Battle of Endor, in which he fought alongside Antilles.
The Kenobi Medallion was first mentioned in the 1989 West End Games roleplaying sourcebook Galaxy Guide 1: A New Hope by Grant S. Boucher. At the time, it was presented as a standalone medal, with Jek Porkins stated to be a recipient. It was not until the Star Wars Insider 74 article "Who's Who in Echo Base" by Josh Radke that the Kenobi Medallion was established to be an upgrade to the Kalidor Crescent, and the article established Reyé Hollis as being awarded both. The article also mentioned Toryn Farr's receipt of the Kalidor Crescent.
- Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (Non-canonical appearance) (Possible appearance as achievement/trophy)
- The Farlander Papers (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: X-Wing (First appearance)
- Of Possible Futures: The Tale of Zuckuss and 4-LOM (as Award of Merit)
- Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance
- X-Wing: Wraith Squadron
- X-Wing: Wraith Squadron audiobook
- X-Wing: The Official Strategy Guide
- X-wing Collector's CD-ROM: The Official Strategy Guide
- "Who's Who in Echo Base" – Star Wars Insider 74
- The New Essential Guide to Characters
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Star Wars: The Official Starships & Vehicles Collection 14 (Welcome On Board: Nien Nunb: A Sullustan Hero)
- Lead by Example
Notes and references
- Star Wars: X-Wing
- X-Wing: Wraith Squadron
- X-Wing: The Official Strategy Guide
- Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance
- "Who's Who in Echo Base" – Star Wars Insider 74
- The New Essential Guide to Characters
- Galaxy Guide 1: A New Hope
- Lead by Example
- The New Essential Chronology
- The New Jedi Order: Destiny's Way
- "Who's Who in the New Jedi Order" – Star Wars Insider 57
- Of Possible Futures: The Tale of Zuckuss and 4-LOM
- Star Wars: X-Wing Alliance manual
- The Farlander Papers