Who was the most decorated WW-II military man ?

Discussion in 'OFF-Topic / Misc.' started by ccheese, Dec 31, 2012.

  1. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    Audie Murphy is reported as the "most decorated combat soldier" of WW-II, but was he the most decorated military man of WW-II ?
    In addition to the Medal of Honor, Murphy had at least one of every award the U.S. could offer (33 total), including 3 Purple Hearts and awards from Belgium and France.

    However, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, while not a "combat soldier", had a chest full of goodies too. Many were theater awards, just for "being there". And, President Roosevelt did award him the MOH...... God knows what for !!

    But... who was the U.S. military's most decorated service member ???

    Charles
     

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  2. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    Depends how you measure "most decorated". Kiwi Captain Charles Hazlitt Upham has to be up there - he was VC and Bar!

    Ooops...just realised you were asking about the most decorated US military man. Well, since this is an international forum I'm going to keep my post and stick up for Capt Upham, an incredibly brave man!
     
  3. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    VC and Bar? Does that mean VC twice!? :shock:

    That's an impressive, eeerrmmmm....don't know if 'collection' is the right word here guys, help me out! :oops:
     
  4. RabidAlien

    RabidAlien Active Member

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    Dang. Had to go look up Mr. Upham. Now, does anybody know of any good books about him?
     
  5. herman1rg

    herman1rg Well-Known Member

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    Three people have been awarded the VC and Bar, the bar representing a second award of the VC. They are: Noel Chavasse and Arthur Martin-Leake, both doctors in the Royal Army Medical Corps, for rescuing wounded under fire; and New Zealander Charles Upham, an infantryman, for combat actions.
     
  6. herman1rg

    herman1rg Well-Known Member

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    New Zealand Flying Officer Lloyd Trigg has the distinction of being the only serviceman ever awarded a VC on evidence solely provided by the enemy, for an action in which there were no surviving Allied witnesses. The recommendation was made by the captain of the German U-boat U-468 sunk by Trigg's aircraft.
     
  7. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    VC and Bar means, yes, he was awarded the VC twice...and he survived! According to Wikipedia, he died in 1994.
     
  8. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    Would Goering count? Talk about medal-hog......
     
  9. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Don't forget Idi Amin. Claimed to have fought in WW2, he gave himself the VC! :ahole:
     
  10. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    Idi Amin :)

    Not helping am I......I'll get my coat.

    Steve

    Edit. I was beaten to it! Great minds etc.
     
  11. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Are you sure that in his case that VC doesn't mean Vicious C*nt? :lol:
     
  12. ccheese

    ccheese Member In Perpetuity
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    #12 ccheese, Dec 31, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
    When I started this, I was really thinking U.S. service members. However, lets include EVERY service member who fought in WW-II. I think Her Majesty's service gave away VC's like candy. A VC for sinking a U-boat ? Or a MOH for downing five enemy aircraft ? C'mon !!!

    Murphy is credited with killing over 280 German soldiers !!! "Dugout Doug" was probably the only recipient of the MOH who really didn't deserve it.

    So, who was the most decorated service member of WW-II ??

    Edit: According to ask.com (yahoo.com) Audie Murphy was not the most highly decorated. He was the most highly decorated combat service member from WWII. COL Robert Howard is considered the most highly decorated service member ever, if you consider number of awards for valor. General Douglas MacArthur is THE most highly decorated service member of all time for sheer number of awards; valor and meritorious. COL Robert Howard is the only person to be nominated three times for the Medal of Honor.


    Charles
     
  13. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    #13 stona, Dec 31, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
    Not in WW2. There's more to the story than just sinking a U-Boat.

    Trigg's award was posthumous for a start. A very,very brave man.

    An awful lot of WW2 VCs were awarded posthumously (82/182) not good odds.They were certainly not handed out like candy.

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  14. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    Charles,

    Dunno if you were being:

    (a) Ironic, or
    (b) If you missed a "don't" between the "I" and the "think"

    If neither of the above are correct then I find your comment rather offensive. To suggest that the British Commonwealth's highest award for bravery is granted with little merit or justification is, frankly, ridiculous. The US isn't the only country that produces brave men and women! I strongly suggest you read the write-ups for VC winners and then determine whether the medal was awarded "like candy".
     
  15. fubar57

    fubar57 Well-Known Member

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    I recall reading an article on the VC(can't remember where) and one of the sentences was as Charles wrote but this was during the origins of the medal, South Africa, Crimea etc.. That all changed for later wars.

    Geo
     
  16. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    It was awarded for what some would say were political reasons in Victorian times. Notably at Lucknow and famously at Rorke's Drift.
    This was certainly not the case by WWI. Posthumous awards were made possible slightly earlier,1907 I think but haven't checked.

    Victoria Crosses are the first award at any investiture and it is worn first in an array of medals. VC are also the first post nominal letters taking precedence over all other awards and orders. Even if a Garter Knight won one he'd be a VC first.

    Did you know that one American has one? We don't know his name, he is the unknown soldier from WWI.

    Cheers
    Steve
     
  17. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    #17 Lucky13, Dec 31, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
    Don't know if these numbers are correct but, so far awarded:

    Victoria Cross: 1,356
    Medal of Honor: 3,476

    ...and in the short time that the Knights Cross was awarded:

    Diamonds: 27
    Swords: 160
    Oak Leaves: 890
    Knight's Cross:7,365

    What was the other combatants medals, besides Mannerheim Cross, Hero of the Sovietunion etc...?
     
  18. Edgar Brooks

    Edgar Brooks Active Member

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    That has to be one of the most offensive things I've seen in a very long time; over the entire fighting forces of Britain and its Commonwealth, 182 VCs were awarded during WWII, of which 29 went to the RAF. Of those 29, only one was a fighter pilot, and 16 received it posthumously (and that includes the one who only sank a U-boat.) If that's giving them away like candy, no wonder everyone was starving during the war.
     
  19. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    There were times during the history of the VC and the MoH where the prestige of the award was lost and they were given 'out like candy'. Sorry, but its the truth. Because no other military decoration was authorized during the Civil War, some seemingly less exceptional and notable actions were recognized by a Medal of Honor during that conflict.
     
  20. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    I will agree that there are some VC and MoH recipients whose actions, at least to our eyes, don't necessarily compare with the actions of other recipients. Equally, there are many who were never recognized despite showing extreme bravery. However, Charles made specific reference to a WWII VC winner and I think we'd all agree that the VC was not given out like candy during that conflict.
     
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