- Second World War (1939-1945)
- Marine Fighting Squadron 215 (VMF-215), Marine Air Group 14 (MAG-14), U.S. Marine Corps
"For extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession as Commanding Officer and a Pilot of Marine Fighting Squadron TWO HUNDRED FIFTEEN (VMF-215), Marine Air Group FOURTEEN (MAG-14), FIRST Marine Aircraft Wing, in aerial combat against enemy Japanese forces in the Solomon Islands and Bismarck Archipelago Areas, from 5 January 1944 to 15 February 1944. A brilliant leader and aggressive airman, Major Owens executed numerous combat missions against the enemy, frequently in the face of heavy hostile antiaircraft fire and strong aerial opposition. While carrying out these vital assignments during this period, he shot down seven enemy aircraft and probably destroyed five others. Maintaining his squadron at the peak of combat readiness through an efficient training schedule for pilots, he contributed materially to the outstanding success of his squadron in inflicting extensive losses upon the enemy and in providing effective fighter cover for our bombers. By his valiant leadership and unwavering devotion to duty, Major Owens upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service."