Petition For Proposed
Queen Elizabeth Medal
For Those Who Have Served In Harm’s Way
Compiling this website and the path leading to this petition has been something I would recommend other readers take comfort from. In every family – yours, your neighbours, friends, mine; in every family there is someone who has done something extraordinary.
I only met my paternal grandfather three times before he passed away in 1964*. Some 50 years later during a family genealogy search, a relative found details of his war service and sent me across the official excerpt from the National Roll of The Great War: 28 July 1914 – 11 November 1918. I must admit, when reading where he had been during World War 1, to an overwhelming humbleness at this, and sadness at not knowing my grandfather better:-
National Roll of The Great War: Official Excerpt From Page 24
McLEAN, W. J., Driver, R.H.A.
He volunteered in February 1915, and in the following November was drafted to France where he served in several engagements, including those in the Somme, Arras (where he was wounded), Vimy Ridge, Passchendaele, and St. Quentin. Later he was injured in an accident and was in hospital for six weeks. He was demobilised in February 1919, and holds the 1914-15 Star, and the General Service Medal and Victory Medals. 71 Mann Street, Walworth, SW17.
One of the WW1 medals that he was awarded struck a chord from way back in history, to the purpose of this website and petition. On the reverse of the WW1 medal were the simple words:-
1914 – 1919
WW1 Victory Medal
It is this elegant simplicity of the above old WW1 medal that brings about the wish of this petition almost 100 years later, to consider a simple few words on a new medal: the proposed Queen Elizabeth Medal:-
WHO HAVE SERVED IN
Example Medal Wording From This Petition: Reverse Side of
Proposed & Petitioned Queen Elizabeth Medal.
This is a very basic illustration. The subscribers of this website would warmly welcome anyone with better illustration skills to send in their interpretation of what such a proposal might look like? Please: Contact Us – Click Here. Thank you.
Example Medal Illustration From This Petition: Obverse Side of
Proposed & Petitioned Queen Elizabeth Medal. Photo (c) Mr Dave King
There is of also the protocol of a medal ribbon. Often the colours denote something referenced by the nature of the award. In this instance it might be a vertical band of dark green in the centre of the ribbon to represent emergency Medical Personnel, with red on each side for the Fire-fighters, then khaki flanking the red, this time for the Army with a further set of blue on either side for Navy, Air Force and Police. Just a thought.
Whatever else, the purpose of this proposed and petitioned medal for those who SERVED IN HARM’S WAY is a modern day version of the 100 year old medals from WW1. But times have changed absolutely. The Ebola virus is bringing about extraordinary acts of human kindness at great risk to the medical personnel who volunteer to go and help people stricken or vulnerable to this dreadful and highly lethal haemorrhagic fever.
On a personal note, almost going full circle from WW1 to now, whilst studying the detail to support this petition I discovered something I didn’t know. I certainly knew about Vimy Ridge. But had no idea my grandfather had served there. There have been highly moving documentaries about this conflict in WW1, and the memorial says more than a thousand words…
Vimy Ridge WW1 Memorial (c) Carcharoth
Vimy Ridge was one of many, many battles in WW1. For the entire war, it is reported that there were an almost incomprehensible 6,334,522 WW1 medals as appear at the top of this page awarded. Plus a further 6,390,000 British War Medals and 2,366,000 1914-1915 Star alongside these.
If you are reading this, given the fact that millions served, and so very many WW1 medal awarded, it is highly likely that, given the population in Britain in 1919 [Source: Click Here ] was around 60% of what it is now, you have a relative who has been on duty in this worldwide conflagration. A pause for thought.
Coming up to present day, the challenges facing humanity still include war. But there are so many more problems that seem to beset the world. Just one, as mentioned, being the Ebola virus. Surely the hundreds of volunteers – modern day brave souls such as William Pooley:-
…who selflessly volunteer to go into harm’s way to help others at real risk to their own personal safety deserve some thanks? A little recognition from the State? Please.
There are, of course, and fortunately for humanity, a very long list of decent people who do this. Who make sacrifices. Who help others in such a way as to disregard their own personal safety. Who literally put their life on the line. An old saying brings comfort in this modern era where with 24 hour news coverage tragedy doesn’t seem far away:-
“When Things Are At Their Worst, People Are At Their Best”
I can only speak from eye witness and personal perspective, but I have seen some pretty courageous people who have acted in a brave manner and in significant danger to themselves in order to help other fellow human beings to safety.
In essence, that is the purpose of this petition. For the whole country to say thank you in a small way. But in a style and from a high level that gives meaning to that thanks. For our Sovereign, HM Queen Elizabeth to consider such an award would, in the view of at least one person tapping these words out on a keyboard, be an elegant way of making that appreciation real.
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