Oops! General Accidentally Wore Ribbons Upside Down at State of the Union


(CONNECTING VETS)Some days, it’s hard to be on our A-game. But an off day usually doesn’t coincide with a nationally televised event, like, say, the State of the Union address. For National Guard chief Air Force Gen. Joseph Lengyel, the nightmare came to life when he sat behind the military’s other top brass. 

With his ribbons proudly on display. Upside down. 


To his credit, Lengyel didn’t shy away from the screw-up. In fact, he admitted it on Twitter and is advising others to not “let it happen to you!” 

RELATED: 3 VA programs for National Guard and Reserves

The stoic faces of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is a mainstay for the annual State of the Union, typically only clapping or showing any emotion, really, when the president praises the U.S. military or veterans. 

The gaffe was quickly noted on Reddit with one user writing “I had to rewind, but I am 99.9 percent sure his ribbon rack was upside down! WTF!”

“Am I f---ed in the head, or did the General’s aide just screw the pooch?” wrote u/randomretiredsnco. 

It’s not immediately clear who placed the ribbons upside down, or who, if anyone, offered an on the spot correction. But at least Lengyel’s being a good sport about it and laughing the mistake off, rather than hiding the blunder. 

-By Matt Saintsing

Want to get more connected to the great stories and resources Connecting Vets has to offer? Click here to sign up for our weekly newsletter.