Wow! What a rack!

#1
Being a very small bit of a medal spotter, I was scanning the photos on the Daily Telegraph website (here) for the D Day celebrations (Day 1 of 2), and saw this photo.



It is a pretty impressive rack, and although I don't recognise all of the medals, I can see that this chap was a Legion of Honor winner and received the Bronze Star on four occasions, with "V" Device, as well as a double Purple Heart... but what is quite amazing to me is that he was an ETO, Korea and Vietnam veteran. The only person I have heard of who did that was Hal Moore's Sergeant Major. How common was it for people to serve in all three conflicts?
 
#2
barbs said:
Being a very small bit of a medal spotter, I was scanning the photos on the Daily Telegraph website (here) for the D Day celebrations (Day 1 of 2), and saw this photo.



It is a pretty impressive rack, and although I don't recognise all of the medals, I can see that this chap was a Legion of Honor winner and received the Bronze Star on four occasions, with "V" Device, as well as a double Purple Heart... but what is quite amazing to me is that he was an ETO, Korea and Vietnam veteran. The only person I have heard of who did that was Hal Moore's Sergeant Major. How common was it for people to serve in all three conflicts?
The Blazer Crest is the 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division.
 
#3
Captain Ronald Spiers, portrayed in Band of Brothers (the one who was thought to have mown down German prisoners after giving them a cigarette), fought in WW2, Korea and Vietnam.

When Vets used to speak to him and say they served under him in the war, he would reply "Which one?"
 
#4


Some Odd awards in this rack

Legion of Merit
Bronze Star
Meritorious Service Medal
Air Medal
Army Commendation medal
Good Conduct Medal
Occupation medal
National Defence Service Medal
American Campaign Medal
ETO Campaign Medal
WWII Victory Medal
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry
Republic of Vietnam Campaign
Republic of Vietnam Service Medal
No Korean War Service Awards, and 5 that dont look US Issue just in that left breast rack

The others look Soviet, besides the Légion d'honneur....
 
#5
Could some be medals awarded to a relative that this gentleman has chosen to wear. I don't know the etiquette for US Forces.
I think I'm right in saying that in the UK, we wear our own medals on the left, and you may if you choose wear a relatives on the right breast. Although I've only seen the old boys in the Associations do this.
If he earnt them all himself, he has had a busy life!
 
#6
The medals running down on the far left look like Soviet jubillee medals for the anniversary of victory in the Great Patriotic War.
 
#8
His jump wings also have a combat diftinguishing device indicating a t least one combat jump. I find this odd if in fact he claims allegiance to 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, a "leg" unit. I had the honor to serve with a number of veterans of WWII, Korea and VN who were still serving in the late 1960''s.
 
#9
PsyWar.Org said:
The medals running down on the far left look like Soviet jubillee medals for the anniversary of victory in the Great Patriotic War.
I was just about to suggest that they could be Soviet era Great Patriotic War jubilee medals as they resemble Soviet era awards I've seen on Russian soldiers. I wonder what's the story behind him wearing them however? I've not heard of Putin handing out many Soviet medals to foreign troops to recognize their contribution to the defeat of Nazism. I think the Russians gave the Merchant Marine sailors who braved the Arctic convoys a medal in the 90s but that's about all.

And what's up with the French Legion of Honor? Must have been quite a guy to get the Legion d'Honneur for WW II service? Pity the photographer didn't identify the person or show his face.
 
#10
What's interesting is that those would have been issued during the Soviet-era, on every ten year anniversary. There was a special class of the jubillee medals for awarding to foreigners and it looks like he received one from 1965 onwards.

The Soviets did award medals and orders to the Western Allies. For example both Eisenhower and Montgomery were awarded the Order of Victory, the Soviet's highest military order.



Ruckerwocman said:
PsyWar.Org said:
The medals running down on the far left look like Soviet jubillee medals for the anniversary of victory in the Great Patriotic War.
I was just about to suggest that they could be Soviet era Great Patriotic War jubilee medals as they resemble Soviet era awards I've seen on Russian soldiers. I wonder what's the story behind him wearing them however? I've not heard of Putin handing out many Soviet medals to foreign troops to recognize their contribution to the defeat of Nazism. I think the Russians gave the Merchant Marine sailors who braved the Arctic convoys a medal in the 90s but that's about all.

And what's up with the French Legion of Honor? Must have been quite a guy to get the Legion d'Honneur for WW II service? Pity the photographer didn't identify the person or show his face.
 
#11
MittMayo said:
Captain Ronald Spiers, portrayed in Band of Brothers (the one who was thought to have mown down German prisoners after giving them a cigarette), fought in WW2, Korea and Vietnam.

When Vets used to speak to him and say they served under him in the war, he would reply "Which one?"
I've had a personal chuckle, as I played the German you refer to in BoB gunned down after taking a smoke from Spiers. :D :lol:
 
#13
Thanks for all the replies.

I think the Legion d'Honneur may have been presented this week. Sarkozy held a presentation this week in Paris for various veterans.

I had forgotten about the 'Biggest Brother'!
 
#14
visitor said:
MittMayo said:
Captain Ronald Spiers, portrayed in Band of Brothers (the one who was thought to have mown down German prisoners after giving them a cigarette), fought in WW2, Korea and Vietnam.

When Vets used to speak to him and say they served under him in the war, he would reply "Which one?"
I've had a personal chuckle, as I played the German you refer to in BoB gunned down after taking a smoke from Spiers. :D :lol:
You mean to say he missed? Gutted, and I thought he would have been a good shot. Fancy you being German and on ARRSE! Blimey :roll:
 
#15
barbs said:
Thanks for all the replies.

I think the Legion d'Honneur may have been presented this week. Sarkozy held a presentation this week in Paris for various veterans.

I had forgotten about the 'Biggest Brother'!
Speirs wasnt the "Biggest Brother" that was Major Winters.
 
#17
MittMayo said:
visitor said:
MittMayo said:
Captain Ronald Spiers, portrayed in Band of Brothers (the one who was thought to have mown down German prisoners after giving them a cigarette), fought in WW2, Korea and Vietnam.

When Vets used to speak to him and say they served under him in the war, he would reply "Which one?"
I've had a personal chuckle, as I played the German you refer to in BoB gunned down after taking a smoke from Spiers. :D :lol:
You mean to say he missed? Gutted, and I thought he would have been a good shot. Fancy you being German and on ARRSE! Blimey :roll:

:D :lol: Yeah but only a part time German in between being "Sgt Perconti" body double :lol:

Mind you having met & chatted with the real "D.Winters" on set several times, he was nothing like I would have imagined him to be. Even though with all the combat experience they went through, he was a proper polite gent, even when describing some of the adventures, the one thing that stuck in my mind was how polite & gentleman he is.
 
#18
I've known several US veterans of all three conflicts mentioned (some highly decorated for bravery). Just as I served with many Brit veterans who saw combat on India's (now present day Pakistan's) NWFP (chasing the Faqir of Ip - predecessor to OBL!), WW2 in Burma and NW Europe, post war in Palestine, Korea, Malaya, Radfan, Borneo and NI (and that was from only one regiment) though the most medals - including decorations - I saw one of them with was 14 (not inluding 'bars' to both GSMs) most had been wounded, some several times in different theatres - though Brits don't award medals for wounds.

Sad to say I'm a little sceptical of the array the 'Vet' portrayed is sporting - delighted to be proved wrong though!