STAN SMITH’S AWARD OF THE LEGION d’HONNEUR
Stan was ceremonially presented with the medal on Thursday, 27th January 2016 by the French Ambassador, Her Excellency Sylvie Bermann in the presence of the Welsh Secretary, Steven Crabb, MP.
Memories of D-
To commemorate the award of the Legion d'Honneur to Stan Smith, we reproduce here his memories of the invasion in June 1944 as recorded on the D Day and Normandy Fellowship web site www.ddnf.org.uk/memories/ . You may also like to compare this account with the one given on the same website by Able Seaman John Goldsmith.
Although I retired as a Squadron Leader in the RAF, my wartime service was in the Royal Navy, in which I continued to serve until 1956.
The original plan was that we should carry nine British-
Our tanks belonged to the Sherwood Rangers (troop commander Captain W Eldridge), part of the 50th Northumbrian Division, and we were supposed to launch them three miles off Jig Green beach at H-
Our landing craft was badly damaged by the first mortar bomb and by Teller mines, which had blown a 10-
Eventually, our landing craft slid back into deeper water and floated off. As she moved astern, a stick of three mortar bombs exploded in the water immediately ahead of us – just about where I had been standing a few moments before. We made our way to a hospital ship lying off shore and transferred Able Seaman Laurence into their care. We then proceeded to a pre-
We berthed in Southampton and were granted a few days leave. The captain and his watch went first, and I and my watch (two seamen, the signalman and the motor mechanic) were left to tidy the ship up. Two days later, I received orders to take our landing craft to Shoreham for repairs. I reminded our superiors that the captain was on leave and that I only had half a crew, but was told that it was imperative to get her there in time to fit into the repair yard’s programme. With me in temporary command, we sailed the following day for the short, but interesting trip, bearing in mind that we were listing heavily to port, that we were down by the head, and that one of the two rudders was still jammed at hard-
Repairs at Shoreham took four weeks. While we were there, the Germans began to send their V1 (‘Doodle-
You probably know that later in his career Stan worked on high-
Midshipman Smith, RNVR in 1944
The medal of a Chevalier of the Legion d’Honneur
Stan at the presentation in Cardiff,being congratulated by the French Ambassador, Her Excellency M. Sylvie Bermann.
Answers to the quiz on the Programme page.
1. Breathalyser mouthpiece
2. 8th January 1940
4. Caver or Potholer.
5. Anitra's dance, Ase's death, and Solveig's song
6. One with multiple meanings.
7. The Squanderbug
8. RHYTHM, CHRYSM or SYZYGY
10. Long Range Desert Group
11. Lights and siren on emergency vehicles.
12. His mother, Anna Lloyd Jones, was born at Blaenalltddu farm near Newquay.
13. Load it and fire it(shotgun)
14. 1. A type of whistle or recorder.
2. A type of bean
15. St David
16. A short, small recovery in share price after a sharp fall.
17. She smoked cigarettes.
18. Prime numbers separated by six. 1:7, 5:11, 11:17, etc.
19. Daphne du Maurier
20. 1. A poet
2. A composer.
21. “Is this the real thing?”
22. “My Struggle”
23. St Non
24. Taximeter cabriolet.
25. One two thousandth
27. In the gatehouse
28. Colin Firth
30. Solve or set crosswords
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