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McCrystalHarrison

Wearing of ww1 medals

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McCrystalHarrison

I have 2 questions.
1) Is it appropriate for a great grandson to wear medals on ANZAC day?
2) Is it appropriate for same great grandson to wear replicas because the originals are lost?

I've tried to find the answer. (Also) The medals are miniature replicas. Of the 14-15 medal, Victory and British medals. Great grandson wants to wear a suit, and put a pin containing miniature replicas on r/h side of jacket. Acceptable or not?

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Coldstreamer

its a personal choice

IMHO yes to both

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John_Hartley

Seems absolutely fine to me.

I understand the only problems with wearing medals were when someone tried to pass themselves off as a veteran. Clearly not going to be the case now and I think he's paying a great honour to his great grandfather.

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gem22

Make sure he wears them on the right side of his chest. That way no-one can have a go at him about inappropriate medals. By wearing them on the right he is showing that he is paying his respects to a family member.

I wear my father's medals from WW2 on Remembrance Sunday; similarly my wife wears her father's medals.

Garth

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michaeldr

Wear the medals with pride, like the young soldier below

IMG_8269_zpsc2e5f087.jpg

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McCrystalHarrison

I asked on my online mums group and got a mixed bag of answers, but some people were adamant that its not OK and its disrespectful both because the honour reverts to the state upon the death of a serviceman and because they are not the originally issued medals (or re-issues from the WO - which are unavailable for WW1 medals).
So far from replies here, its looking promising that it will be OK :)

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CGM

This is what the Returned and Services League (Australia) has to say:

The Wearing of Medals and Decorations
War medals may only be worn on the left breast by the persons upon whom they were conferred. The honour afforded remains with the individual and does not pass to a widow, parent, son or relative when the recipient is dead. Similarly, the same rules apply in cases where a posthumous award is made.
The policy as it stands is that on the death of a recipient, technically, any honours and awards revert to the commonwealth in the first instance. The reality of course is that family members have an ambient claim and the commonwealth would not seek to intervene in medals being passed on directly within the family.
Family members may wear their forebears medals on the right breast which indicates that they are not their own. There is no limitation or formal policy on what occasions they should be worn. In essence, the wearing of forebear's medals on the right breast is a convention passed down over the years that is largely dictated by the occasion and (ideally) a measure of decorum fitting the event. They should not be worn lightly or where it would be inappropriate to do so.
____________
(my bold)

Common sense prevails here, I think.

He should go ahead and wear the medals with pride, but if you are in Australia and have any further concerns because the medals are replicas I suggest you contact the RSL directly.

New Zealand states:

The New Zealand Defence Force is pleased that so many members of the public will join them wearing medals on Anzac Day, and have provided some guidance about how medals can be worn with pride.
The rules governing medal wearing in New Zealand, known as the Order of Wear, specifically allows family members to wear medals of deceased ex-service personnel on the right side of the chest for national days of memorial. This includes Anzac Day and Remembrance Day (11 November), as well as other notable events.............................It is acceptable to wear a family member’s miniature medals mounted on a medal bar if preferred.

CGM

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KGB

Due to the heavy casualties, by 1919 many families had no Father. In such cases (in Britain) medals were worn (r/h) by sons or widows. There is absolutely no problem with any family members showing respect on the few days of the year that draw us to observe national sacrifice.

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royalredcross

This seems to be mostly an Australian thing, though it's beginning to creep in over in the UK on Armistice Day. My personal opinion is that medals ought never to be worn except by the person to whom they were awarded.

If you start this kind of thing, where does it end ? Do I also wear on the right my great aunt's ARRC group from WW1 and my great grandfather's Crimea group ?

You can do honour to those who have given service in many ways. You do not have to plaster over your coat groups of medals you have not been awarded, right side or left.

As I said, a personal opinion, though it may not be popular.

NGG

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squirrel

As some have said, it is a personal choice. IMHO there is nothing at all wrong with wearing a relative's medals as a sign of remembrance. Replica medals are fine also IMHO if the originals have been lost.

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McCrystalHarrison

Its causing a ruckus on my mums group. It is so disappointing that when the point of ANZAC Day is to remember the service and sacrifice of our service men and women, that people really think it is disrespectful (and - apparently deceitful according to one digger family on my mums group) to wear the medals rightly awarded to a forbear. It is ironic. Remember them forever. But don't visually display the story of their service.

(My grandad was part of the British Army and Royal Navy not an ANZAC)

Thanks to everyone for their comments. I am grateful for all comments. I wish it wasn't an issue at all. If someone said to my nephew 'why are you wearing those medals' - he would be able to say 'because in 1915 my great grandad landed in France, from there he went on to participate in a number of key battles. Then he was injured in late 1917, returned to the UK, and upon recovering, entered the Royal Navy where he participated in further hostilities in 1918 onward.' He knows what his great grandfather did 100 years ago. And recognises the immensity of it. How that is a bad thing, I do not know.

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David  B

I suspect there is probably a little jealousy there in the fact that some had forebears entitled to war medals and others did not.

It is recognized in Australia that a descendant of the original person that was awarded medals for service has the right to wear these But on the right breast. Generally only worn on Anzac day or Remberance day or any other parade or commemoration.

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Waddell

If wearing them on the right is a problem for you I have occasionally seen descendants marching with a framed photograph and medals of the servicemen. That way you are remembering them and only displaying their medals

Scott

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KGB

It is a bit rich to say "You did not get those" as an excuse, I am not 150 years old.

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Steven Broomfield

I wouldn't do it, personally, but I have no problem with anyone who does. personal choice.

(Why does it bring to mind the episode of Dad's Army where Pike wore his Scout badges?).

And, for what it's worth, I'm uncertain that I'd ever choose mumsnet (or similar) as an arbiter on military ethics. :whistle:

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Tom Lang

I have 2 questions.

1) Is it appropriate for a great grandson to wear medals on ANZAC day?

2) Is it appropriate for same great grandson to wear replicas because the originals are lost?

I've tried to find the answer. (Also) The medals are miniature replicas. Of the 14-15 medal, Victory and British medals. Great grandson wants to wear a suit, and put a pin containing miniature replicas on r/h side of jacket. Acceptable or not?

Wear the replicas with great pride on any formal/informal occasion!

There is nothing wrong in doing so, and it does something good for the sacrifice of the ancestor to be 'remembered'.

As a civilian, the 'great grandson' is not subject to any military rules or customs.

I read somewhere that widows began the 'custom' of wearing their husband's medals. I don't think that any military rule was about to stop the practice. Other widows reacted by immediately destroying/disposing of the medals as they didn't want any reminders of their loss.

Kindest Regards,

Tom.

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McCrystalHarrison

I wouldn't do it, personally, but I have no problem with anyone who does. personal choice.

(Why does it bring to mind the episode of Dad's Army where Pike wore his Scout badges?).

And, for what it's worth, I'm uncertain that I'd ever choose mumsnet (or similar) as an arbiter on military ethics. :whistle:

Essential Baby - they're a tough crowd, you'd be surprised. There are a lot of military wives and some serving members, as well as daughters of veterans etc. They're usually pretty spot on with ethical issues, and the finders of all facts available out there in cyber space. But, they're also capable of being nasty and judgy and elitist. Nature of the beast of a forum of 100,000 women I guess :)

Wear the replicas with great pride on any formal/informal occasion!

There is nothing wrong in doing so, and it does something good for the sacrifice of the ancestor to be 'remembered'.

As a civilian, the 'great grandson' is not subject to any military rules or customs.

Great answer - thank you.

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Medaler

Wearing the medals of an ancestor on the right - fine - particularly on occasions of remembrance.

Originals or replacements? - no different. In fact I would recommend the wear of replacements even by the servicemen themselves.

1/ It preserves the originals

2/ Any theft, loss or accidental damage is of much less consequence

3/ If a man had 2 sons - what are they supposed to do?

4/ Wearing replica's is much more acceptable than wearing originals that were issued (and named) to someone else if your ancestors medals have been lost.

The only thing I would say regarding the OP is to question the order you list them "14-15 medal, Victory and British medals" - You are probably aware that this in not the correct order of wear, but, just in case..........

14-15 Star nearest the right shoulder - the red stripe of its ribbon nearest the right shoulder, the blue nearest the centre of the chest. A person stood opposite the wearer should read the colours off from his left to his right as "red, white and blue"

British War medal in the middle

Victory medal nearest the centre of the chest.

I hope that has helped, and that both you and the original recipients Great Grandson have a wonderful day and create your own cherished memories of the event.

Warmest regards,

Mike

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Steven Broomfield

3/ If a man had 2 sons - what are they supposed to do?

Don't go there.

When my mother died, my father re=married. The lady in question's father had been born in 1860 or thereabouts, and had served in the Oxfordshire Light Infantry. He had been discharged and called to the Reserve for South Africa, 1899. He was awarded, over his service, the 1854 and the 1895 India GS medals, and the Queen's and King's SA Medals. When he died, they were divvied-up between his 4 children!

Happiiy, Joan (step-mum) was able, in her latter years, to reunite them and, I believe, present them to the regiment.

(Incidentally, he joined the Grimsby Pals - allegedly - but was too old to proceed overseas. He must have had lead in his pencil, because Joan was born in 1921!).

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KGB

More than 2 sons? Depends on the culture. Primogeniture rules OK.

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Medaler

Ooooh Steve - a fine sounding group of medals. Funnily enough, I was telling someone else earlier today that my interest in WW1 evolved out of my fascination for Victorian military history.

As for families splitting groups.............Best not to get me started on that one!

Still, reuniting them gives us collectors something to do with our time. Despite the odds, I have actually managed to do that a few times. Most notably with a second China and New Zealand to a gunner.

Cheers,

Mike

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Guest Justsomeone

Are these the miniature replicas put out by Australia Post?

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McCrystalHarrison

Hi Justsomeone from EB

To everyone who is part of this group - I linked to my mothers group to show the mixed bag of responses and they took offence to me saying that some people can be judgy. So someone has decided to come over and prove my point!

The replicas are Official and can be worn according to appropriate protocol, they are MINTED and (like anyone in our country knows) our Post Office brings out minted coins, and collectables. These are a special release for the 100 year anniversary of ww1, they can be worn according to protocol. They're beautiful, and they were not cheap. So please, go away, judgy EB people!

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McCrystalHarrison

OK to appease the people over on my mummies group, its been suggested I post my original post from over there and see if your answers change (because I apparently came here looking for agreement? or possibly changed my question in such a way as to garner agreement.).

I think your definition of miniature replicas and the men and women you were talking to on that forum would be quite different.

Many men and women got miniature replicas of their own medals made. This is what they will be expecting you to mean. These are even referred to on the RSL website.

Commemorative, collectible miniatures whilst technically being miniature replicas, are another kettle of fish.


I'd encourage you, if you want a really straight answer from the folk on that forum, is to post exactly what you've done here, which is:

My grandad was in WW1 (as were 2 of my great grandads), we don't have his medals but as a birthday gift for my nephew, I bought him a commemorative set from the post office. They're collectible miniatures on a pin. Anyway he said on the box it says the pin can only be worn according to protocol - I don't know what this means? He wants to wear the pin on ANZAC day, can he do that and whats the protocol?


As I said earlier, my father's from WW2 have disappeared, too (and gone for good it appears, as we cleared out my mother's house last year, and went through everything, item by item). That's really sad, but that's how it is.

In bold was my original question to my mums group (the rest of the post is the request from an EB member that I do this). So 14-18ers if you can be bothered could you please let me know if this new perspective changes your opinion. They are concerned that I have not made it clear enough that these medals are not War Office endorced (or similar issue I am not 100% clear about). My counter is they actually are - the WO refers people to private minting companies for ww1 medals and these particular medals are endorsed by Legacy or RSL (cant recall, dont have them in front of me) and are exact replicas, mounted appropriately, correct ribbon, correct drop etc.

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