Cosford volunteers celebrate Legion d’honneur.
Two volunteers at the Royal Air Force Museum have been awarded France’s highest distinction, Legion d’honneur, for their services to secure France’s liberation during the Second World War. To honour and celebrate their remarkable achievement, Leading Aircraft Woman, Rose Davies and Lance Bombardier, Arthur Jones were guests of honour at a drinks reception hosted by the RAF Museum American Foundation.
The awardees attended the reception held at the RAF Club in London on Thursday 7th July 2016, also attended by Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Andrew Pulford, along with RAF Museum Trustees, CEO Maggie Appleton and other distinguished guests.
Following a welcome from Major General Frederick Roggero USAF (retd), President RAF Museum American Foundation and a message of thanks from Colonel Murand, Air Attaché French Embassy, museum volunteers Rose and Arthur along with former Battle of Britain Pilot Wing Commander Tom Neil, were presented with their medals. Guests then enjoyed an afternoon of champagne and canapés.
The prestigious Legion d’honneur is awarded to D-Day veterans by the French government as a way of thanking those who fought and risked their lives for France’s liberation. Established in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, the award is France’s highest distinction, in recognition for both military and civilian merit. Very few British nationals have received the award since the French President announced in June 2014 that all British veterans who took part in military operations in France between 1944 and 1945 would be awarded.
Rose Davies first volunteered at Cosford for the International Women’s Day event held in 2015 where she gave an inspirational talk, inspiring the next generation of women about future careers in the RAF, and spoke about her time in service as a Radar Operator.
Arthur Jones has been a regular volunteer at the RAF Museum’s Cosford site for many years, volunteering in a variety of roles including working with school groups and giving talks at special events. He is also one of the regular faces in the museum’s Visitor Centre each Tuesday, where he shares his experiences with visitors.
Pic: Arthur Jones with RAF Museum CEO Maggie Appleton.