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Croix de Guerre Recipients

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  • Jacques Yves Cousteau (1910 - 1997)
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The Croix de Guerre (English translation: Cross of War) is a military decoration of France, first created in 1915. It consists of a square-cross medal on two crossed swords, hanging from a ribbon with various degree pins.

The decoration was awarded during World War I, World War II and in other conflicts. The Croix de guerre was also commonly bestowed on foreign military forces allied to France.

The Croix de Guerre may either be awarded as an individual or unit award to those soldiers who distinguish themselves by acts of heroism involving combat with the enemy.

The medal is awarded to those who have been "mentioned in despatches", meaning a heroic deed or deeds were performed meriting a citation from an individual's headquarters unit. The unit award of the Croix de guerre with palm was issued to military units whose men performed heroic deeds in combat and were subsequently recognised by headquarters.

Please link the profiles of recipients on GENi to this project - Bold links are to profiles of GENI - others are to pagesd outside GENi.

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Individuals in World War I

  • Millicent Sylvia Armstrong won the Croix de Guerre for bravery in rescuing wounded soldiers while under fire.
  • Lt.-Gen. Sir James Melville Babington, Commander of the 23rd Division (United Kingdom)
  • Hobey Baker, an American fighter pilot.
  • Thomas A. Pope 1918 Corporal, U.S. Army; also earned the U.S. Army Medal of Honour, the British Distinguished Conduct Medal, and the Médaille militaire, for bravery displayed in Hamel, France.
  • Arthur Bluethenthal, All American football player and decorated World War I pilot.
  • Solon Hannibal de la Mothe Borglum, for work with the Les Foyers du Soldat. American Sculptor.
  • Bl. Daniel Brottier, beatus in the Roman Catholic Church; acted as a military chaplain during the war.
  • Stanley Melbourne Bruce, 1st Viscount Melbourne and later Prime Minister of Australia, in 1917.
  • Eugene Bullard, wounded in the 1916 battles around Verdun, was awarded the Croix de guerre for his heroism. Served with the Lafayette Escadrille as the first African-American combat aviator.
  • Georges Carpentier, Aviator during the war as well as a world champion boxer.
  • Brigadier General Anthony Courage DSO MC whilst with British Tank Corps, WW1
  • Colonel Lawrence Moore Cosgrave DSO & Bar (August 28, 1890 – July 28, 1971) was the Canadian signatory to the Japanese Instrument of Surrender at the end of World War II.
  • Clarkson Crane (1894–1971), American novelist, short-story writer and writing teacher, served with Section 586 of the U.S. Army Ambulance Corps from 1916 to 1919. His Croix de Guerre citation from 1918 is preserved in his personal papers in the archives of the GLBT Historical Society in San Francisco.
  • Father John B. DeValles, A chaplain with the Yankee Division, he was known as the "Angel of the Trenches" for his valiant deeds in caring for both Allied and German soldiers on the battlefields of France. Fr. DeValles was injured in a mustard gas attack while attending to a fallen soldier and died two years later.
  • William J. Donovan, legendary soldier and founder of the Office of Strategic Services. Awarded U.S. Medal of Honour, Distinguished Service Cross and Croix de Guerre with Palm and Silver Star.
  • Otis B. Duncan, lieutenant-colonel in the 370th Infantry Regiment (United States) and highest-ranking African-American officer to serve in World War I combat.
  • Ernest Fawcus, officer in the Northumberland Fusiliers and Royal Flying Corps, awarded the Croix de guerre for leading successful bombing attacks.
  • Dorothie Feilding, a British volunteer nurse awarded the Croix de guerre for bravery in the field.
  • George L. Fox, awarded the Croix de guerre for his service on the Western Front. He was also one of the Four Chaplains who gave their lives when the troopships USAT Dorchester was hit by a torpedo and sank on February 3, 1943, during World War II.
  • Robert Gauthiot, French Orientalist, linguist, and explorer, interrupted his exploration of the Pamir Mountains in July 1914 to return home to serve as a captain in the infantry. He received the Croix de guerre before he was mortally wounded at the Second Battle of Artois in May 1916.
  • Erik Svend Hundertmark Danish-American private, Field Ambulance Corps 1914-17 in Northern France, was awarded the Croix de guerre with bronze palm and three silver stars.
  • Lieutenant-Colonel Harold Iremonger
  • Henry Lincoln Johnson served with the 369th Infantry Division, better known as the Harlem Hellfighters or the Black Rattlers, a regiment consisted entirely of African Americans excepting their commanding officers.
  • Major General Charles E. Kilbourne who was also the first American to win the United States' three highest medals for bravery.
  • American poet Joyce Kilmer (1886–1918), a sergeant and intelligence observer with the 69th Volunteer Infantry, 42nd Rainbow Division, was posthumously awarded the Croix de guerre for service.
  • Henry Louis Larsen, an American Marine commanding the 3rd Battalion 5th Marines during every major battle of the war in France involving the United States.
  • Henri de Lubac, a Roman Catholic Jesuit novice serving in the Third Infantry Regiment, who was severely wounded in the head on 1 November 1917 while fighting near Verdun. He later became an influential Catholic theologian and Cardinal.
  • William March, American writer, awarded the Croix de guerre with palm.
  • Lawrence Dominic McCarthy, was also an Australian recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.
  • Horace McCoy, American novelist and screenwriter.
  • Ronald G. Morrow was awarded the Croix de Guerre and subsequently added six palms and 21 stars, each star being a citation and each palm the equivalent to another Croix de Guerre.
  • George S. Patton, legendary American general.
  • Waldo Peirce, American Red Cross volunteer (1918, for courage during the Vosges Hills Battle)
  • Isabel Weld Perkins, for Red Cross volunteer work.
  • Eddie Rickenbacker, Captain and flying ace of the 94th Aero Squadron, United States Army Air Service, during World War I; also recipient of the U.S. Medal of Honour.
  • James E. Rieger, Major (later Colonel), led a key attack during the Meuse-Argonne offensive. Also awarded the Distinguished Service Cross
  • Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., Son of President Theodore Roosevelt. Battalion commander in France.
  • Milunka Savić, was awarded the French Croix de Guerre 1914–1918 with Palm. She is the only woman in the world awarded with this medal for service in World War I.
  • James M. Sellers, president of Wentworth Military Academy and College and U.S. Marine. Awarded the Croix de Guerre for heroism at Belleau Wood
  • Laurence Stallings, American writer.
  • Donald Swartout, American, Jackson, Michigan, awarded French Croix de Guerre by Marshal of France Petain, for carrying important messages under machine gun fire on September 1, 1918 between Juvigny and Terny Sorny
  • Swartout commendation letter March 1919
  • Thomas Joseph Senn, Dispatch runner for the NZ Rife Brigade, Waihungarua, North Auckland, New Zealand. Awarded the Belgium Croix de Guerre, It was said that "being very fast and short, he didn't make an easy target. His dispatches were never lost and that he never lost his way, despite many a close call."
  • John Tovey, Royal Navy, later became a senior naval commander and an Admiral of the Fleet.
  • Stephen W. Thompson, aviator, was awarded the Croix de Guerre with palm. He is credited with the first aerial victory by the U.S. military.
  • Ludovicus Van Iersel, Dutch-American sergeant who won the Croix de guerre twice while serving in France.
  • Herbert Ward, artist, sculptor and African explorer, awarded the Croix de Guerre while serving with the British Ambulance Committee in the Vosges
  • Edwin "Pa" Watson, served in France. Earning the U.S. Army Silver Star and the Croix de Guerre from the French government.
  • William A. Wellman, American fighter pilot in the Lafayette Flying Corps, awarded Croix de Guerre with two palm leaves, 1918
  • Samuel Woodfill, an American infantry lieutenant who disabled several German machine-gun nests and killed many enemy combatants with rifle, pistol and pickaxe. He was awarded the American Medal of Honour and the French Croix de Guerre.
  • Alvin C. York was awarded the Croix de Guerre with bronze palm for his valour in the Battle of Meuse River-Argonne Forest near the town of Verdun, France. Also awarded the American Medal of Honour.
  • Oliver James George (M.M), CPL East Surrey Regiment. Volunteered in September 1914, and after serving at stations in England, he was sent to France in October of the following year. There he fought at St. Eloi and Ypres, but being wounded two months later was invalided home to hospital, returning to the front in April 1916. He was in action at Messines, but at Guillemont during the Somme offensive, received a second wound which necessitated his evacuation to England. Early in 1917 he was again in action this time at Nieupoort and in November was drafted to Italy. Returning to France two months afterwards, he served at Bapaume & on the Somme during the “retreat and advance” and for conspicuous gallantry while in charge of a “mopping up” section in an operation in Menin in October, which resulted in the capture of 28 prisoners and two officers was awarded the military medal and Croix de Guerre. Also serving with the army of occupation, he was demobilised in March 1919 and holds the 1914–1918 star and general service & victory medals. REF: Page 93 - National Roll of the Great War - Z2579
  • George Fawke, Royal Artillery, awarded Croix de Guerre by General Charles De Gaulle

Individuals in World War II

  • Pvt. William Lindley Mawer, Awarded June 1944;for extreme bravery and disregard for personal safety
  • George Scales, British farmer/Commanding Officer LCT-7011 awarded the Croix de Guerre during D-Day. Presented to him in 2007 by French Attache Naval, Capitaine de Vaisseau Jean Nicolas Gauthier of the Ministere de la Defense.
  • Władysław Anders, Polish general, commander of the 2nd Polish Corps, 1943–46.
  • Vera Atkins, assistant to head and intelligence officer of the French section of Special Operations Executive (SOE).
  • John Beech Austin, Squadron Leader in both the RAF and the SOE.
  • Maurice Bambier, French politician and former Mayor of Montataire, awarded the French Croix de guerre for his services during the Dunkirk evacuation.
  • Josephine Baker, American-born French dancer, singer and actress, for her work in the French Resistance.
  • Samuel Beckett, awarded the Croix de guerre by General Charles de Gaulle in March 1945.
  • Hyman "Hank" Bergman, awarded for service fighting with Free French Forces Arno River.
  • Marcel Bigeard, highly decorated French general and veteran of World War II, French Indochina and Algeria; received both the Croix de guerre 1939–1945 and the Croix de guerre TOE with a total of 25 citations, including 17 palms.
  • Frederick Charles Bothwell, Jr., Colonel, USAAF; awarded Croix de Guerre avec Palme for service in enemy occupied Yugoslavia. Upon retirement, he was appointed Director of the New York State Civil Defence Authority.
  • Phil H. Bucklew, US naval officer; "Father of American Naval Special Warfare".
  • Thomas A. Cassilly, Ph.D. - U. S. Army forward observer. Retired United States Foreign Service officer and a former professor of international relations at Montclair State University.
  • Frederick Walker Castle, U.S. Army Air Forces general and posthumous recipient of the Medal of Honour
  • Jacques Cousteau, aqualung inventor, diver and underwater film maker.
  • Ève Curie, Author, war correspondent, lieutenant in the 1st Armoured Division, "First Lady of UNICEF"
  • Lionel Guy D'Artois, Canadian Army officer and SOE agent; awarded the Croix de guerre for service with the Interior French Forces in occupied France.
  • Philippe Daudy, journalist and novelist.
  • Guy de Rothschild, awarded the Croix de Guerre for his military valour.
  • Philippe de Rothschild, awarded the Croix de Guerre for his service with the Free French Forces.
  • Gabriel Brunet de Sairigné, French colonel who participated with the Free French Forces to the East African Campaign (in Eritrea and Syria), the Tunisia Campaign, the Allied invasion of Sicily, the Operation Dragoon and the campaign of Alsace.
  • Avery Dulles, S.J., awarded the Croix de Guerre for his liaison work with the French Navy.
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower, Supreme Allied Commander during the liberation of France.
  • Frantz Fanon, awarded the French Croix de Guerre by Raoul Salan for service in the French Free Forces in North Africa and Alsace.
  • Carl Gustav Fleischer, Norwegian general, who won the first major victory against the German Axis forces.
  • Stephen Galatti, Director of AFS, American Field Service
  • Francis Grevemberg, United States lieutenant colonel, later superintendent of Louisiana's state police.
  • Thomas "Loel" Guinness, Group Captain and pilot
  • Tony Halik Polish pilot in RAF; after being the only Polish/RAF pilot shot down over France, he joined the French resistance.
  • Bob Hoover, Army Air Corps pilot and USAF test pilot
  • John Howard, awarded the Croix de Guerre in 1944 for his valour. When his ship struck a mine off the French coast, killing the captain, Howard took over command and fought valiantly to save his ship and crew, even jumping into the sea to rescue wounded sailors.
  • Agnès Humbert, art historian, was awarded the Croix de Guerre with silver gilt palm, for heroism in her work in the French Resistance.
  • Maria Justeau, French Resistance heroine.
  • Noor Inayat Khan, a wireless operator in the French section of the SOE. She was flown to occupied France in June 1944 and operated until mid. October. Captured and tortured, she was eventually executed at Dachau concentration camp on 13 September 1944; awarded the George Cross posthumously.
  • Curtis E. LeMay, awarded the French Croix de Guerre with palm.
  • André Malraux French novelist, art theorist and Minister for Cultural Affairs.
  • Jean Mayer, future president of Tufts University, awarded for his courage and bravery.
  • Lt.Colonel Blair "Paddy" Mayne, British Special Air Service, Croix de Guerre with Palm. Awarded Légion d'honneur, awarded the Distinguished Service Order (UK) four times.
  • Wayne H. Mervau, 315th Infantry, 79th Div United States Army, for meritorious action during the battle of the Foret de' Parroy, covering fire for unit, 21 October 1944 wounded in action.
  • General Dragoljub Mihailovic, Serbian Chetnik leader, awarded by Charles de Gaulle.
  • Paul de Montgolfier, fighter pilot for the French Air Force.
  • Audie Murphy, American actor; most decorated U.S. Army soldier during the war, was awarded the French "Croix de Guerre avec Palme" three times and the Belgian Croix de Guerre with Palm once, as well as the American Medal of Honour.
  • Leonard W. Murray, Canadian admiral, awarded the Croix de guerre with bronze palm for his role in the Battle of the Atlantic.
  • Eileen Nearne, member of the UK's SOE. She served in occupied France as a radio operator under the codename "Rose".
  • John B. Oakes, future editor of the New York Times; awarded for his counter-espionage activities with the Office of Strategic Services (OSS).
  • Russell Roach, American corporal of A Company, 3rd US Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard), awarded the Croix de guerre 1939–1945 (France) in 1944 for his bravery and valour during the Liberation of France during his campaign in Rhineland, Germany.
  • Marcel Oopa, Polynesian politician.
  • Peter J. Ortiz, Marine officer; member, Office of Strategic Services (OSS).
  • George S. Patton, legendary U.S. Army general. Awarded for leading U.S. Third Army during the liberation of France.
  • Andree Peel (1905–2010), French Resistance member.
  • Frank Perconte, member of Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment.
  • Col. David E. Pergrin, awarded the Croix de Guerre for service during the Battle of the Bulge.
  • Harry Peulevé, a wireless operator and organiser in the French Section of the SOE.
  • HRH Prince Philip, awarded the Croix de Guerre in 1948 for service in the Royal Navy.
  • Abbé Pierre (1912–2007), French Roman Catholic cleric; founder of Emmaus.
  • Forrest Pogue, US Army combat historian.
  • HSH Rainier III, Prince of Monaco, decorated with the Croix de Guerre for service with the Free French army.
  • Robert Rosenthal of the Eighth Air Force of the USAF.
  • Colonel Jimmy Stewart being awarded the Croix de Guerre with Palm in 1944.
  • Alexander Sachal, Russian artist who joined the French Resistance; awarded the Croix de Guerre.
  • Desmond J. Scott, a New Zealand fighter pilot and Group Captain who flew for the RAF. He was awarded both the Belgian and the French Croix de Guerre.
  • Jan Christian Smuts, Field Marshal, South African Prime Minister.
  • George Reginald Starr, Special Operations Executive.
  • James Stewart, American actor awarded the Croix de Guerre with Palm in 1944 by Lt. Gen. Henri Valin, Chief of Staff of the French Air Force, for his role in the liberation of France. He retired from the United States Air Force Reserve as a brigadier general.
  • Violette Szabo, a British SOE agent who was sent into occupied France. Her first mission was a success, but during her second mission she was captured and tortured. Eventually sent to Ravensbruck concentration camp, she was executed on 5 February 1945 (at age 23); awarded the George Cross posthumously.
  • Alfred Touny (1886–1944), a leader of the French Resistance, now buried in the Mémorial de la France combattante.
  • Nancy Wake of the SOE was the highest decorated Allied servicewoman of the war. Awarded the Croix de Guerre three times for service with the French maquis.
  • F.F.E. Yeo-Thomas, member of RF Section of the SOE. A Special Operations Executive Liaison officer, he worked with the Bureau Central de Renseignements et d'Action (BCRA) of the Free French forces organising and coordinating resistance in both Vichy and Occupied France.
  • George Albert Robert Yull served with the RACS and won the Croix de Guerre which was given to him by General Charles de Gaulle on the day when Paris was liberated.
  • Colonel Richard de Roussy de Sales, awarded the Croix de Guerre with Bronze Palm for his service with the Rèsistance.
  • Major Richard D. Winters, fought with Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division from the Normandy invasion to Operation Market Garden to the Battle of the Bulge. He was besieged at Bastogne and aided with taking of Hitler's Eagle's Nest in Austria.
  • Eugene Steinhoff 1917-2015, St. Charles, Missouri.

Other recipients

  • During World War I Cher Ami, a Carrier pigeon with the 77th Division, saved the lives of 194 American soldiers by carrying a message across enemy lines in the heat of battle. Cher Ami was shot in the chest and leg, blinded in one eye, losing most of the leg to which the message was attached, but continued the 25-mile flight avoiding shrapnel and poison gas to get the message home. Cher Ami was awarded the French Croix de Guerre with Palm for heroic service. She later died from the wounds received in battle and was enshrined in the Smithsonian Institution.

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