Gregory Keough – Awarded CIA Service Intelligence Star

CIA memorial wall Gregory Keough


Gregory Keough was a covert Operations Officer during the Cold War for the Directorate of Operations, the clandestine branch of the Central Intelligence Agency. He honorably served his country and was awarded the Intelligence Star for a rescue he was involved in overseas where he saved the life of another officer. While Mr. Keough saved his fellow officer, an additional officer involved in the rescue died. Mr. Keough’s fallen close friend and fellow officer is recognized by a star on the CIA’s Memorial Wall.

The Intelligence Star is an award given by the Central Intelligence Agency to its officers for “voluntary acts of courage performed under hazardous conditions or for outstanding achievements or services rendered with distinction under conditions of grave risk”. The award citation is directly from the Director of the CIA and specifically cites actions of “extraordinary heroism”. Only a few dozen people have received this award (mostly posthumously), making it one of the rarest valor awards awarded by the US government.

Gregory Keough awarded the intelligence star by robert gates director of the CIA

Gregory Keough is one of the few living recipients of the Intelligence Star. There are 140 stars on the CIA Memorial Wall celebrating the heroic actions of those who received the Intelligence Star but lost their lives in the line of duty see more below.

Gregory Keough Receives CIA Award

The CIA Memorial Wall

Inclusion on the Memorial Wall is awarded posthumously to employees who lose their lives while serving their country in the field of intelligence. Death may occur in the foreign field or in the United States. Death must be of an inspirational or heroic character while in the performance of duty; or as the result of an act of terrorism while in the performance of duty; or as an act of premeditated violence targeted against an employee, motivated solely by that employee’s Agency affiliation; or in the performance of duty while serving in areas of hostilities or other exceptionally hazardous conditions where the death is a direct result of such hostilities or hazards.