Wearing your relative's Medals

Discussion in 'WW2 Militaria' started by HomeCountiesBattalions, Feb 13, 2020.

  1. HomeCountiesBattalions

    HomeCountiesBattalions Burma WW2 British Cavalry Reserch

    Hello All.

    I just wanted to know your thoughts on what are your views on this subject

    Wearing your relatives medals for pride and respect and remembrance.

    I've seen people wearing their great grandfathers or grandfathers ww1 and ww2 medals and each conflict.

    I've seen this at parades every year

    Wearing the medals on the Right side

    What are your views on this

    (To be honest it doesn't bother me I think it's a great idea but I know some people are not keen on this. But the RBL welcome it as it's become more common)

    Attached Files:

  2. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    I think it is really up to the individual. I have recently marched at the Cenotaph and had previously decided not to wear my grandfather's entitlement for WW2 at functions and parades. My view was that I felt uncomfortable wearing these medals as I had not earned them so to speak.

    My mind was slightly changed when some of the Chindit veterans present asked me why I was not wearing his medals. They told me that it was important to do so as a mark of recognition, for a soldier who had sadly not returned from Burma and was unable to wear them himself. I have now compromised by wearing a set of miniatures instead.
    Seamus M, Dave55, Chris C and 5 others like this.
  3. Tricky Dicky

    Tricky Dicky Don'tre member

    Wearing a relatives medals on your right hand side is not a problem to me, its clear they arent yours and that that they belonged to a close relative who had earned them, that right was now passed down to you and you need to show them [the medals and the person] the respect they deserve - so dont wear them down the disco or night club or anywhere else that could be construed as disrespectful

    Lindele, CL1, Wobbler and 2 others like this.
  4. Roxy

    Roxy Senior Member

    I've had a look, but couldn't find the photo. Mrs Amy Bradford regularly attended Remembrance Day parades at Folkestone wearing the medals awarded to her sons; including 2 Victoria Crosses. If it was good enough for her, it's good enough for me.
    CL1, Dave55, Wobbler and 1 other person like this.
  5. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    There are a few threads already on the forum about this.
    Have a search & see if you can find them.
  6. Bruneval

    Bruneval Well-Known Member

    Medals - A very contentious subject! I don't have an issue with people wearing their relatives medals on the right hand side; in fact I would encourage it. However, it's when they're worn with commemorative/anniversary medals, because they only have one 'real' medal, and people start to look like a South American Dictator!! People still get it wrong today - I've seen some veterans wearing the OSM - Afghanistan medal with the ISAF medal for Afghanistan mounted together; it's wrong! The ISAF medal isn't for wearing!

    In essence, wear your relatives medals with pride.
    CL1, dbf and HomeCountiesBattalions like this.
  7. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    If they are genuine veterans of the conflict I would say who cares? They served - don't be a pettifogging pedant - if they are entitled to the gongs let em wear them in what ever order they like
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2020
  8. Rich Payne

    Rich Payne Rivet Counter Patron 1940 Obsessive

    I had always assume that the permission to wear medals at commemorations for relatives was for widows / orphans or parents of those who died in service. It seems a bit strange to do it for those who survived. I like most with roots in Britain would be 'allowed' to wear two sets of Great War and two WW2... all survived.
  9. Bruneval

    Bruneval Well-Known Member

    Petty it isn't - the individual is not entitled to wear it in uniform, that's a fact. Why wear it when you leave? Oh, and that's my entitled set by the way! IMG_1986[799].JPG
    bamboo43, Tullybrone, dbf and 2 others like this.
  10. timuk

    timuk Well-Known Member

    Not that I'm one for rules but the rules are that the medals can be worn only by next of kin and only for a deceased (not necessarily in Service) service person. They are not to be worn by service personnel in uniform.
    I do feel that with passing time some of the underlying significance of WW2 medals is lost. For instance someone with only a 1939-45 Star and the War Medal almost certainly indicates a member of the BEF who was captured and became a POW. Someone (although not so absolute) with only a 1939-45 Star, a Pacific Star and the War Medal was likely to have been a Japanese POW.

    Bruneval and Harry Ree like this.
  11. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member

    The 39/45 Star & War Medal combination also applied - until recent years - to personnel killed or captured in April/May 1940 in “The Doomed Expedition” - the debacle that was the foray into Norway.



    Not all personnel who served in Norway are entitled to the Arctic Star.

    Those personnel who only served south of the Arctic circle and were taken POW or KIA - approximately south of Mo I Rana - have no entitlement and like BEF POW & KIA will only have 39/45 Star & War Medal entitlement.
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2020
  12. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member


    Of course it was her right according to the protocol.Incidentally has any individual civilian been charged with wearing a relatives decorations on the left side of the chest.

    I should add the main reason for this note was to welcome you back into the forum....are you still flying?
    Roxy likes this.
  13. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    Downsized Marsha & Ron AJEX 2019 .jpg Thought I'd offer this as an example.
    It shows your's truly with a normal set of ww2 medals, plus one of my daughters wearing her hubbie's late uncles's medals on her right side.
    Reid, Slipdigit, dbf and 8 others like this.
  14. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    You had a busy time of it Bruneval. Good to see your entitlement there. I noticed just recently that Malayan Campaign vets are now allowed to wear the Pingat Jasa Malaysia. Before this was thought to be double-medalling and was forbidden by the MOD. Things are relaxing somewhat and from a civilian's point of view, I don't mind too much.
  15. Lindele

    Lindele formerly HA96

    To me it sounds like a great tradition. In my country, wearing medals from WW2 is not appreciated, and most certainly to wear any medals from my fathers military career would be verboten I think.
    Wobbler, Reid, CL1 and 2 others like this.
  16. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Hi Stefan,

    This is something that few of us would even of considered from the Allied point of view. It is a difficult situation and must have been for the German veterans and their families. I have often felt that the sense of loss for a family is no different, say for a German soldier lost on the eastern front and never to return and my grandmother waiting in vain for the return of her husband who died at the hands of the Japanese as a prisoner of war.

    There is an American saying: to the Victor the spoils. It seems rather apt in this situation.
    Lindele likes this.
  17. TriciaF

    TriciaF Junior Member

    As I'm 'getting on a bit' in age I've given my father's WW2 medals to one daughter to have mounted and framed. But I was surprised and pleased that each one of our 4 wants them. Including my step daughter who was very fond of her step - Grandpa.
    They can sort it out themselves.
    Reid, CL1 and bamboo43 like this.
  18. TriciaF

    TriciaF Junior Member

    ps I've just seen your thread on this, dbf. Very helpful.
    WW2 Medal racks
  19. Bruneval

    Bruneval Well-Known Member

    Thanks Bamboo. The only other double-medalling I can think of off the top of my head is the Korean War, where personnel received The Korea medal and automatically qualified for the UN Medal Korea. Also, the Gulf War in 1991, saw UK personnel receive the Gulf War medal, which they can wear, and were given Saudi and Kuwaiti Liberation Medals as keepsakes.

    CL1, Lindele and bamboo43 like this.
  20. Lindele

    Lindele formerly HA96

    Would that translate to: "The winner takes it all"?
    CL1 likes this.

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