Vic­to­ria Cross by the num­bers

Canada's History - - CONTENTS - –– Phil Koch

A look at the num­bers be­hind the Vic­to­ria Cross — the high­est medal awarded for brav­ery on the bat­tle­field.

The Vic­to­ria Cross (VC) is the high­est mil­i­tary dec­o­ra­tion in the Bri­tish hon­ours sys­tem and was pre­vi­ously pre­sented to ser­vice mem­bers from Com­mon­wealth coun­tries. It was cre­ated by Queen Vic­to­ria and Prince Al­bert dur­ing the 1853–56 Crimean War and was first awarded in 1857. Each medal is made of bronze and bears the words “For Val­our.” Un­like pre­vi­ous mil­i­tary awards, the VC was in­tended to rec­og­nize gal­lantry re­gard­less of mil­i­tary rank or so­cial sta­tus; since 1907, VCs have been granted posthu­mously. Vet­er­ans Af­fairs Canada lists ninety-nine Cana­dian VC re­cip­i­ents, all for deeds com­mit­ted be­fore the end of the Sec­ond World War. In 1993 Canada cre­ated its own mil­i­tary hon­ours sys­tem, in­clud­ing the Vic­to­ria Cross — in­scribed with the Latin “Pro Valore“but not yet awarded.

This Vic­to­ria Cross was awarded to Filip Konowal for his “most con­spic­u­ous brav­ery and lead­er­ship” in Au­gust 1917 at Hill 70 near Lens, France.

The Cana­dian Vic­to­ria Cross was un­veiled in 2008.

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