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Firefighter Dustin Powell Creates Custom Challenge Coins for the Ft. Belvoir Fire Dept.

March 13th, 2012

The Ft. Belvoir Professional Firefighters Union IAFF Local #F-273 contacted us with a request for custom challenge coins.  Using their specifications, we were able to create the coin pictured here.  As you can see from the photograph, the custom challenge coin was very detailed.

The front of the coin has “Fort Belvoir Fire & Emergency Services” written on it.  It also has the emblem of the Department of Defense of the United States of America pictured along with an American flag.  The back of the coin has Station 463, 464, 465, and 466 listed on it.  There is also information about when the union was organized.  The date February 28th, 1918 is easy to spot because it is located in the center of the coin.

The union was thrilled to receive their challenge coins.  Firefighter Dustin Powell wrote us a thank you which we decided to include in our blog.  Here is what he wrote about his new challenge coins:


On behalf of the Ft. Belvoir Professional Firefighters Union IAFF Local #F-273, I would like to express my sincerest thanks. I received the coins this morning and they look FANTASTIC! We are more than pleased. I am especially so because of the ease of the process to have a coin made from start to finish. We will absolutely have more orders coming in soon and again, thank you for your work.

FF Dustin Powell

Ft. Belvoir Fire Department

We love receiving feedback from our customers.  If you have something you want to share with us, please feel free to email  Your testimonial may be one that we share with our readers in an upcoming blog.  As always, we’re available by phone to answer your questions and handle your challenge coin requests.  Call 1-800-953-3607 toll-free.

Custom Challenge Coins to Honor Fallen Firefighters

August 16th, 2011

It is a sad day when a department loses one of its own.  That’s why so many fire stations around the country have started their own traditions.  They create custom challenge coins in the firefighter’s honor and hand them out at his or her memorial service.  This allows people in the community to take part in a celebration of the fallen department member’s life and also to recognize his or her heroic and selfless nature.

Memorial coins are extremely personal.  They often feature a photographic image of the firefighter being honored.  The way that these coins are created is by using a process called offset printing.  This allows an exact copy of the photograph to be used without altering its appearance.  Offset printed coins have an epoxy dome placed over them to protect the photograph.  This gives them a glossy finish and also ensures that they look new despite being handled year after year.

Black velvet bags and boxes are often the presentation option of choice at memorial services because they are classic.  They enhance the appearance of the coins and provide recipients with a safe place to keep them.  Challenge coins are often displayed in a person’s home or office.  In the case of a fallen firefighter, a special coin may be kept in the fire station as a way to remind others to strive for excellence.

Custom challenge coins mean many different things because they are rich in symbolism.  They have a distinct appearance and certain weightiness about them.  This gives recipients of the coin the impression that they are being given a gift with value.  They also have come to associate challenge coins with the following characteristics:

  • Bravery
  • Loyalty
  • Excellence
  • Teamwork
  • Leadership
  • Perseverance

Therefore, having a custom challenge coin created for a fallen firefighter is the ultimate display of affection.   Friends and family members have something relevant and memorable to hold onto and people in the community are reminded of the hardworking men and women that make up the fire department in their towns and counties.

Custom Challenge Coins Honor Firefighters’ Bravery

June 24th, 2011

Firefighters are known for their bravery.  Not only do they put their lives in danger to help others, they are also considered stand-up citizens.  These hometown heroes are often the recipients of awards.  Ceremonies held to honor these individuals  feature some kind of gift item.  Why not replace these tokens of appreciation with something rich in sentiment and personal history like a challenge coin?

Cherished Keepsakes Since World War I

Since World War I, these objects have been used to thank others for their outstanding commitment to serving others.  Customized to fit the theme of the event or fire station, they can be created in a variety of sizes and shapes.  They can also feature images and photographs along with text.  This is a great way to add value to the challenge coin by making it a cherished keepsake.

Double Sided Challenge Coins Equal More Space For Messages

Double sided challenge coins give communities ample space to include a personalized message which is directed at the firefighters being honored.  This adds to their overall appeal by making them the kind of award that is never forgotten.  In fact, it isn’t unusual to see custom challenge coins displayed in homes and firehouses across the nation.

Suggestions For Making Your Challenge Coins Stand Out

Here are some ways that you can make your commemorative firefighter challenge coins stand out:

  • Opt to include a 3D image.  A firefighter’s hat or ax can be a powerful symbol when it is three-dimensional on a coin.
  • Use a decorative edge to accentuate your design.  Choose from a Flat Edge, Rope Edge, Spur Edge, Oblique Line Edge, Flat Weave/Bevel Edge or a Cross Cut Edge.
  • Sequentially number the coins.  Because they are considered the highest of honors, challenge coins can be numbered which makes them even more collectible.

Find out more ways to honor the brave men and women that make up your local fire department by visiting today.  Don’t forget to request a free digital proof display your image and no obligation, free quote. You can call 1-800-953-3607 toll free.

Firefighter Challenge Coins Honor Hometown Heroes

April 29th, 2011

If you know a firefighter, chances are they’re a hometown hero.  In small and significant ways, the men and women that make up your local fire department demonstrate their strength, desire to succeed, and commitment to serving others in their communities.

Challenge Coins Are Versatile Through and Through

Paying tribute to these exemplary human beings just seems natural.  That’s why it shouldn’t come as a surprise that custom challenge coins, which are rich in symbolic nature, are handed out frequently to firefighters.  Tokens of appreciation like these help boost morale, commend years of service, and honor those that lost their lives while serving the community.

Challenge Coins Are Honorable

Because they are similar in weight and appearance to a medal, they are highly regarded by the men and women that receive them.  In fact, you could say that they are one of the most honorable awards a firefighter can receive.  When presented to the individual in a velvet box or acrylic capsule, these items take on a whole new meaning.  It isn’t unusual to see incredible firefighters nationwide carrying and displaying their own custom challenge coins.

Features of Firefighter Challenge Coins

There are a number of ways that a fire department can customize their challenge coins.  Here are just a few to think about:

  • Size – Sometimes a design calls for a large coin. Over sized challenge coins are very noticeable because they are bold and different.
  • Shape – A cut out challenge coin gives designs depth and dimension.  This is yet one more feature that makes your product even more attractive.
  • Colors – A myriad of colors can accentuate certain areas of your coin which helps brings your designs to life.
  • Style – There are several different styles of challenge coins to choose from including offset printed, silkscreened, and dual plated.
  • Single or Double Sided – Your challenge coin can feature images and text on one or both sides.
    Custom Edges – Some edge options include Flat, Rope, Spur, Oblique, Flat Weave/Bevel, and Cross Cut.
  • Glow-in-the-Dark Enamel – A truly unique way to set your challenge coins apart, glow-in-the dark enamel makes a great first impression.
  • Sequential Numbering – Limited edition coins are highly collectible.  If you are only creating a limited number of these items, sequential numbering is for you.

They can also choose what images and text to feature on their coins.  This helps make an outstanding design that every firefighter can appreciate.

To learn more about how you can create custom challenge coins for everyone in your fire department, visit, email or call 1-800-953-3607 toll-free.