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Distinguished Service Order Recipients

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  • Lt. General Sir David Henderson (1862 - 1921)
    Lieutenant General Sir David Henderson , KCB, KCVO, DSO (11 August 1862 – 17 August 1921) was the senior leader of British military aviation during the First World War, having previously established hi...
  • Dr. George Alfred Heberden, DSO, JP (1860 - 1916)
    Educated at Malvern College, 1872-8, matric. Cambridge (Jesus College) 1880, BA 1883, student at St. George's Hospital, Westminster, MRCS and LRCP 1888. Buried in the English Cemetery at Maitland, nr. ...
  • Lyster Fettiplace Blandy, CB, DSO (1874 - 1964)
    LYSTER FETTIPLACE BLANDY [England and Wales Census, 1881, index, FamilySearch] Captain in Royal Engineers [British Columbia Marriage Registrations, 1859-1932, index and images, FamilySearch]
  • General Sir John Stewart Mackenzie Shea GCB, KCMG, DSO (deceased)
    ) Educated at Sedbergh School and the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst,[1] Shea was commissioned into the Royal Irish Regiment in 1888.[2] He transferred to the Indian Army and was posted to the 15th...
  • Arthur Percival Foley Rhys Davids, DSO MC+Bar (1897 - 1917)
    CWGC Lieutenant RHYS DAVIDS, ARTHUR PERCIVAL FOLEY Died 27/10/1917 Aged 20 56th Sqdn. Royal Flying Corps D S O, M C, Mentioned in Despatches Son of Prof. T. W. Rhys Davids, F.B.A., and ...

(Level 2 Gallantry Award)

The D.S.O. was instituted by Royal Warrant on 6th September 1886.

The D.S.O. was originally instituted as an award for officers of the British Army and Commonwealth Forces, usually at the rank of Major. It was, however, also awarded to officers at a rank above or below Major. The D.S.O. could be awarded for an act of meritorious or distinguished service in wartime and usually when under fire or in the presence of the enemy. It was also made available for officers at the equivalent rank in the Royal Navy and, from 1st April 1918, the Royal Air Force.

Between 1914 and 1916 the D.S.O. was also awarded to some Staff officers when they were not under fire or in contact with the enemy. This was not well received at the time by officers who were in the field.

From 1st January 1917 it was restricted to recommendations for individuals who were in the presence of the enemy. The award was generally given to an officer in command, but some were awarded to junior officers below the rank of Captain.

Almost 9,000 D.S.O.s were awarded during the First World War. On 23rd August 1916 a Warrant enabled a recipient to be awarded a Bar for an additional award of the D.S.O.

The medal was issued without the name of the recipient being engraved on it, but some medals do bear the name of a recipient engraved on the reverse of the suspension bar. The recipient of a D.S.O. is known as a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order and is entitled to use the letters D.S.O. after his name.


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