I thought that was saddening.He was convinced his mates would accuse him of 'wal
'walting' but none of us here would ever consider that chap a walt!
He has suffered more in those three years in a Jap POW camp than we all do in our entire lives!
I have nothing but admiration for them all!
Thank you Sirs!
I am puzzled about that business of not being entitled to the Defence Medal.
It was said he was not entitled because he had not served 'Three years in England', but what about the bit which says 'or six months overseas in territories subjected to, or threatened by enemy attacks'
The Royal Hospital know about these things of course, and I am not suggesting they are wrong, but it does surprise me the old chap was not entitled under the six months overseas territories rule.
Of course he deserves respect, and has that in abundance.
That is not the point I am making.
My point is surprise at the six months overseas clause not qualifying him for the Defence Medal, which he had worn for so many years in the belief he was entitled to it.
Did being a Far East Prisoner of War mean he was not in an area threatened by enemy attack, if not then what is meant by (quote) '....six months overseas in territories subjected to, or theatened by enemy attacks'. (British Campaign Medals by Robert W.Gould)
Not: The type of threatened attack is not specified, e.g. attack by air.
I watched that last night, and this was very touching- he was worried how he had shown his friends he had four medals, but now he had three, and flelt like an imposter -the RSM, who in true RSM fashion was a cock- had taken away his defence medal, saying he was not entitled to it- the old boy replied "yes seargent major" and let him take it just like that- after waering it for 60 years- that gentleman is the definition of a proper man in my opinion, medals or no medals. If only my generation and the younger generatons could take note.
The overseas qualification for the Defence Medal was six months in a non-operational theatre, though subject to or threatened with enemy atttacks (i.e. air). So if you qualified for the Burma Star you did not automatically qualify for the Defence Meda for example. Places like Palestine, West Africa or the Canal Zone would qualify for the DM.
To see someone who was not only a japanese POW but also survived the bombings in Liverpool genuinely concerned about how he could face his mates after "walting" for 60 years due to being issued a medal in error makes squabbles about whether yr telic medal is still in the post seem somehow trivial.
My thoughts on these fine scarlet jacket wearing gentlemen are already well known, see link for the remainder of the series:
Chelsea Pensioners still living out their dream as a soldier,shame really that the lengths they go to to become one. Still the old boys network of officers and senior ranks running the show as they really cannot fit into Civvy St when they retire.Why do the old lads still call them 'SIR'?
Managed to record and view the later program, there was alot of pride in those men. Should be interesting to see if anything changes at the hospital(apart from the obvious) when women are amongst the ranks!