On a black disc 2 1/4 inches (5.72 cm) in diameter a talon of an American eagle in gold issuant; on tab placed 1/4 inch (.64 cm) above the disc the word "AIRBORNE" in gold on a black background.
The talon represents the seizing and holding ability of an airborne division. The black background is symbolic of the darkness during which an airborne attack might often be made.
The shoulder sleeve insignia was approved on 8 February 1943. The airborne tab was rescinded on 29 January 1947. The airborne tab was restored on 1 March 1949.