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Belgium: Order of Leopold (Ordre de Léopold / Leopoldsorde). Military Division with 'Swords'. 3rd Class (Commander). Bi-lingual obverse legend
A substantial silvered, gilt and enamel item of insignia measuring 60mm width dimension
The insignia fitted with a full length cravat riband with ties
The Order of Leopold is the premier national order in the Belgian order of precedence. It was established in 1832
Condition: Minor scuffs on reverse GVF
Code: 18172Price: 245.00 GBP
Germany: State of Bavaria - Prussia-Austria War Cross 1866
Awarded by the State of Bavaria to their troops engaged in the Prussian-Austrian War of 1866
Code: 18203Price: 30.00 GBP
WW2 & Cold War 78 'Combat Mission' medal lot, to Gunner-Combat Cameraman & later 'Cold War Spook', decorated for personal bravery in the Rhine Airborne Landings 'Operation Varsity': Master Sergeant Fay Nora Steele, USAF late United States Army Air Corps
- United States: Air Medal. Ist type. Un-numbered full-wrap brooch. 'Fay N. Steele'
- United States: Bronze Star Medal. Un-numberd & un-named. With slot brooch
Note: Both medals contained in their Second World War issue black leatherette cases of issue, with gilt tooled lids. The cases with scuffs
Sold together with below following original ephemera;
- Russia (Soviet Union): Diplomatic Pass for USA Embassy Moscow, wi
- Army Air Forces Certificate of Appreciation for War Service. Named to Fay N. Steele
- Bronze Star Medal Citation extract
- 2 x WW2 B&W photos of USAAF 'Spitfires' (offIcially marked 107th Fighter Recon Sqdn)
- 5 x WW2 B&W photos ex Windsor Castle, England. King George VI & family at review
All photographs with taped edges and some scuffs
The citation for the Bronze Star Medal states;
Fay N. Steele, 6296995, Technical Sergeant, Headquarters Squadron, 1x Troop Carrier Command.
For heroic achievement in connection with military operations against the enemy on 24 March 1945. Serving as combat cameraman in the great airborne operation near Wessel, Germany. Sergeant Steele landed by glider with the airborne troops. Met by heavy enemy fire, both airborne troops and glider pilots were pinned down, several casualties having been sustained among them.. Sergeant Steele volunteering to obtain whole blood from the medical glider a hundred and fifty yards away, with utter disdain for his own safety, ran through a hail of enemy fire and delivered the life giving substance. Entered the military service from Tennessee.
Fay Nora Steele (1916-2016) American, Centenarian and Patriot, was the son of John W. Steele, and Bessie F. Steele. Fay - named in memory of his sister sibling who had died in childhood - was a native of Somerville Town, Fayette County, Tennessee, United States of America, where he was born on 29 July 1916. He lived an uncommonly rich and fascinating 'Century' of life experiences
There are numerous internet sources giving details of Fay's fascinating life and career, including detailed interviews, photographs and even a video of his funeral with gun-salute farewell. The below following obituary is courtesy of the Peebles Funeral Home, and is just a sample of what is available;
Fay N. Steele, age 100, resident of Washington, D.C. and native of Somerville, Tennessee, departed this life Wednesday evening, November 30, 2016 at the Armed Forces Retirement Home in Washington, D.C.
Services of Remembrance for Mr. Steele were conducted at 11 A.M. Thursday, December 8, 2016 at the Somerville First Baptist Church with Bro. Stan Smith, pastor of the Somerville First Baptist Church, officiating. Interment with Full Military Honors followed in the Somerville City Cemetery. Arrangements were provided by Peebles Fayette County Funeral Homes & Cremation Center - Main Chapel of Somerville.
Fay Steele was born July 29, 1916 in Somerville, Tennessee, the son of John Steele and Bessy Fletcher Steele. He joined the U.S. Army in September 1937 with the intent of becoming an Aerial Photographer. He wanted to sign up for thirty years, but could only sign up for three years at a time. His career included flying in 78 Combat missions. Sixty five of these missions were flown as Waist Gunner and Combat Photographer with the Ninth Air Force, in which he earned the Air Medal with 12 Oak Leaf Clusters. The other thirteen missions were with the Ninth Troop-Carrier Command (Airborne) and included two Combat Glider landings. As a result of one of these landings, Fay was awarded the Bronze Star Medal with a V. Later, he was attached to several American Embassies, including the Soviet Union, France, Indonesia and Egypt. Fay retired on November 19, 1957.
Along with this military career, Fay became a track and field star. In 1940, while stationed in Panama, he became the first person to run from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean in one day. In September of 1990, Fay made his 5th trans-Isthmus run exactly fifty years after his first run. Believe it or not, he made the run 2 ½ hours faster! This is after he established a new World Record for men over 70 years old in 1986. Fay was also a star in the U.S. National Senior Olympics Championship, entering the extremely challenging Decathlon. Of the seven times he competed, he won six times!
After his Military Career, Fay embarked on a Zoo career as a Bird Specialist. In this twenty year stint, he went to eight different U.S. zoos. He was then hired by the Smithsonian to do a study of endangered birds on the Mauritius Island. As a result of this work, Fay was elected to membership in the prestigious International Explorer?s Club that includes such members as Charles A. Lindberg, Prince Philip of England and James Doolittle.
Fay moved to the Armed Forces Retirement Home in Washington, D.C. in 1996. He was very active, becoming an ?Iron Man? under the walking program, writing an autobiography titled ?A Man of Steele?, and providing musical enjoyment with his cataloged collection of 45 records.
Fay never forgot his hometown, his home church and, especially, his duty to his God and Savior, Jesus Christ. He taught many of the young people at Somerville First Baptist Church in Sunday School and youth programs.
Fay had no surviving family. However, Fay has considered Niki Wilson of Somerville, whom he brought to Somerville First Baptist Church as a youth, his ?granddaughter? and she and her family have been his ?family? and care providers for many years. Most of his older friends have passed on but many of those younger folks whom he influences, live on with fond memories of Fay.
Those honored to serve as pallbearers were Blake Neil, Justin Pilkington, Justin Wainscott, Seneth Legendre, Josh Jenkins and Corey Rhea. Honorary pallbearers were Rickey Proctor, Virgil Proctor, Mike Proctor, Andy Jenkins, David Wilson, Bob Osburn, Shane Burch and Will Middlecoff.
Memorials may be directed to the Somerville First Baptist Church, 12685 S. Main Street, Somerville, TN 38068.
A more detailed transcript of his services is recorded on the 'Veterans History Project'
Master Sergeant Steele's prowess with 'Camera' and subsequent post-war 'Security Assignments' in the United States Embassies located in Moscow, Cairo and Indonesia, indicate that he was almost certainly a 'Spook' working with or in support of intelligence gathering services
In the portrait of Master Sergeant Steele that is attached to his obituary (courtesy http://www.peeblesfuneralhome.com/notices/Fay-Steele ), his full insignia and medal entitlement was;
- United States Army Air Force 'Air Gunner' Brevet
- Bronze Star with combat V
- Air Medal with 2 x 'Silver' Oak-leaf Clusters
- Army Good Conduct Medal
- Defense Medal
- American Defense Service Medal. With 'Bronze Star' denotes pre-war overseas service
- Asia Pacific Campaign Medal
- European, African, Middle Eastern Campaign With 'Bronze' Star & 'Bronze Arrowhead'
- Victory Medal 1945
A superb lot of medals and ephemera to a most interesting recipient
Note: The postage quoted reflects the additional postage and extra work involved to dispatch this lot
Condition: Medals EF
France: Dunkirk Medal 1940 (Médaille de Dunquerque 1940)
This French medal was instituted to commemorate the French troops who had fought in the defence of Dunkirk in May/June 1940. The award was subsequently extended to include British veterans of the British Expeditionary Force, who had also fought in the defence of Dunkirk, prior to the evacuation of the B.E.F., and French troops from the Dunkirk beaches during 'Operation Dynamo'
Condition: About EF
France: An un-attributed 'Boxer Rebellion' China 1901, era Distinguished Service and Campaign Medal group of 3
The group mounted on a traditional French mounting rod, or 'Boule', and as-worn the group comprising below items;
- Legion of Honour. 5th Class 'Chevalier' breast badge. 3rd Republic with '1870' obverse date
- Medaille Militaire. 3rd Republc issue, with obverse date 1870 (this with 'Sanglier' hallmark)
- China War Medal 1900-1901. With '1900 Chine 1901' clasp (Paris Mint 'Argent' h/m on rim)
Note: All medals with silver hallmarks - the Order / Decoration with 'Sanglier' hallmarks, and the China Medal with 'Argent' (Silver) on rim
Some loss of enamel on Medail Militaire, consistent with age and wear, otherwise a splendid and scarce seen 'China' service combination of medals
Condition: Mostly VF
Code: 18503Price: 295.00 GBP
A rare Purple Heart medal group of 3 to a Scottish resident of the Hawaii Islands, who was 'Killed in Action' at Saipan: Private First Class Pearson Skene, Jr., HQ Co, 1st Battalion 105th Infantry Regiment, 27th Infantry Division, United States Army, late
- Purple Heart (Charles P. Skene Jr)
- Asia Pacific Campaign Theater Medal
- Allied Victory Medal
Note: The Purple Heart' officially engraved on reverse and all medals being contemporary original issues on silk ribands, with correct brooch fittings exactly as issued by the War Department
Sold together with a most comprehensive archive of original letters, cards and photographs, far too much to list individually but including;
- Plush titled leatherett case of issue for Puple Heart addressed to NOK in Scotland
- Photograph of group of officers of The Hawaii Rifles, inc Lt. Skene (extreme left)
- Large illuminated Purple Heart bestowal document from President Franklin D. Roosevelt
- Copy of the 'Leo O Honomu' issue of August 1944, with front page obituary
- Army notebook
- A selection of ornate,Christmas Cards from the Islands to his family in Scotland
- Various correspondence ex US War Department to next of kin in Aberdeen, Scotland
- Lots of letters and photographs from friends and well wishers in the islands
- Archive of letters written by Charles during his initial journey to Hawaai 1928
And much more.........
The below obituary (including garbled sentence and wrong date of education) with photograph of the fallen, was published in The Aberdeen Press & Jornal newspaper issue of 24 August, 1944
DIED IN FIGHT FOR SAIPAN
An Aberdeen sugar planter. Mr Charles P. Skene, second son of Mr & Mrs. C. P. Skene, 2 Queens Gardens, has been killed in action against the Japanese while serving with the American forces in the South Pacific.
He fell in the fighting which led to the capture by the Americans of Saipan - the Bomb Tokio island (sp)
When Japan opened hotilities against America, Mr Skene was serving as a lieutenant with the Hawaii Rifles, a local defence force, but he decided to join the American Army
For fifteen years he had been on the sugar plantations at Honomu, Hawaii, where he was a field superintendent.
When news of his death was received at Honomu a special memoral service was held
Mr Skene was a popular figure in Honomu. A former member of the 1st Aberdeen Troop of the Boy Scouts, he started a Boy Scout troop for the natives
He was also an enthusiastic sportsman, and was also a member of the team which won the basketaball League championship in 1941. It was a tream of many nationalities, no fewer than five of Mr Skene's tem mates were Japs
Thirty five (?) years ago Mr Skene was a pupil of Aberdeen Grammar School
The same newspaper subsequently published the below Purple Heart award announcement, in their issue of 9 December 1944
AWARDED U.S. PURPLE HEART MEDAL
Mr & Mrs. C. P. Skene, 2 Queens Gardens, Aberdeen. have received a letter signed by Mr Henry L. Stimson, Secretary for War, U.S.A., announcing that their son, Pte. (First Class) Charles P. Skene, has been awarded the Purple Heart.
Pte. Skene lost his life when fighting with the American Army on the attack on Saipan
Mr. Stimson in his letter stated that he was writing on behalf of the President
Before joining the American Army, Pte. Skene was for fifteen years on sugar plantations at Honomu, Hawaii. He is a former pupil of the Aberdeen Grammar School
Charles Pearson Skene, Jr, Private (Ist Class), United States Army, second son of Mr. and Mrs. C. P. Skene, 2 Queen's Gardens, Aberdeen, Scotland was killed in action on Saipan Island, South Pacific,on 12th July 1944, aged thirty-five. He left Scotland for Hawaii at the end of 1928, and becamea field superintendent on sugar plantations at Honomu. He started a Boy Scout troop for the natives and in 1941 he was manager of the team which won the basket ball league championship, a team of several nationalities, no fewer than five being Japanese. When Japan opened hostilities, he was serving as a Lieutenant with the Hawaii Rifles, a local defence force, but he subsequently decided to join the United States Army. All reports from his officers and from the men who fought the enemy by hi sside contained praise of his exemplary conduct in action, for which he was awarded the Combat Infantry Badge. In September 1944 his father received the following letter from Mr. Henry W.Stimson, then Secretary of War in the United States:-"At the request of the President, I writeto inform you that the Purple Heart has been awarded posthumously to your son, Private (1stClass) Charles P. Skene, Junior, Infantry, who sacrificed his life in defense ofhis country. Little thatwe can do or say will console you for the death of your loved one. We profoundly appreciate thegreatness of your loss, for in a very real sense the loss suffered by any of us in this battle for ourcountry is a loss shared by all of us." His body, originally interred in Saipan Island, was re-interredin Hilo Military Cemetery, Hawaii, in March 1949, with full military honours
In addition, to above, there is also multi-page copy of 'Individual Deceased Personal File' from Department of the Army, United States. This includes a most detailed and poignant set of correpondence pertaining to the recovery of the recipients body in-the-field, and subsequent reburials. PFC Skene was 'Killed-in-Action' due to being hit in the skull by shell-fire
A rare and most comprehensive Purple Heart group to a Scotsman, and long term resident of Hawaii - sold together with a large archive above referred to
Code: 17639Price: 1000.00 GBP
United Nations Service Medal: With UNTSO (United Nations Truce Supervision Organisation) riband. 1948 -
Medal fitted with original mounting brooch which retains the original hinged pin and clasp fittings
Note: As awarded to qualifying Commonwealth personnel (Australia, Canada & New Zealand) who have deployed on UN Duty in Palestine and adjacent Middle East territories anytime since 1948
An excellent condition and attractive quality early strike of the medal with good crisp matt gilt finish
Code: 17825Price: 12.00 GBP
Belgium: Order of Leopold (Ordre de Léopold / Leopoldsorde). Military Division with 'Swords'. 5th Class (Knight). Uni-lingual (pre-1952) French language legend. With silk rosette on riband
Note: This particular silvered, gilt and enamel item of insignia is of exceptional quality - an early piece from the era of the Great war if not earlier
The Order of Leopold is the premier national order in the Belgian order of precedence. It was established in 1832
This type of insignia was widely awarded to British officers during both
Condition: About EF
Code: 18169Price: 100.00 GBP
Belgium: Order of Leopold (Ordre de Léopold / Leopoldsorde). Civil Division. 4th Class (Officer). Uni-lingual (pre-1952) French language legend. With silk rosette on riband
A silvered, gilt and enamel item of insignia, with intricate hinged supension
Note: An exceptionally fine crafted item of quality insignia
The Order of Leopold is the premier national order in the Belgian order of precedence, and was established in 1832
This type of insignia was widely awarded to British officials, diplomats and officers of the uniformed services during the World Wars
With small chip to reverse lower arm of cross
Code: 18171Price: 100.00 GBP
Belgium: Order of Leopold (Ordre de Léopold / Orde van Leopold). Military Division. 5th Class 'Officer' with uni-lingual 'French' language obverse
The quality of the insignia is exquisite and of the highest quality of craftsmanship
It is of the 'French' language obverse type as awarded during both 'World Wars'. This most likely being dated to the era of the Great War
In the Belgian 'Order of Precedence' the Order of Leopold I is the 1st ranked national order in the Belgian order of precedence
Condition: Toned EF
Code: 18319Price: 115.00 GBP
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