Pin­ning names to the medals

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine - - WRITE IN -

I read with great in­ter­est on page 98 in the May is­sue of your mag­a­zine the many dar­ing ex­ploits of Cap­tain Adol­phus Richard (Dick) Cooper, the late father of reader Pat Hews, who I hope will be en­cour­aged to write a book about him. I can’t think of any­one with such an amaz­ing mil­i­tary ca­reer in the ser­vice of two ccoun­tries spread over bboth world wars.

As a re­minder to rread­ers, Dick Cooper, wwho was flu­ent in seeven lan­guages, was su­uc­ces­sively in the Frrench For­eign Le­gion at ththe age of 16 dur­ing the Gal­lipoli cam­paign of 1915, a Gun­ner with the Bri­tish ar­tillery in France dur­ing the lat­ter part of the First World War, later a mer­chant sea­man, who then re­joined the French For­eign Le­gion be­tween the wars. When the Se­cond World War broke out he be­came an hon­orary Cap­tain in the Bri­tish SOE (Spe­cial Op­er­a­tions Ex­ec­u­tive) as an agent be­hind en­emy lines in North Africa, was cap­tured and a PoW in en­emy-oc­cu­pied France, later es­cap­ing with help from the French Re­sis­tance, then af­ter med­i­cal treat­ment in Bri­tain he was back as a Bri­tish se­cret agent be­hind en­emy lines in Si­cily and Italy dur­ing the fi­nal years of the Se­cond World War.

Be­ing fas­ci­nated with medals from an early age, I was keen to iden­tify the 13 rib­bons dis­played on Dick Cooper’s chest in his por­trait and trust that I’ve got them cor­rect for the ben­e­fit of other read­ers. How­ever, I in­vite Pat to cor­rect me on any in­stances where I’m mis­taken. So here goes, from top to bot­tom...

Bri­tish War Medal 1914-20 (Br); 1939-45 Star (Br); Africa Star (WW2 Br); Italy Star (WW2 Br); 1939-45 War Medal (Br); Croix de Guerre with Sil­ver Star for

Cap­tain “Dick”


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