Only 45 Companions of the Liberation still alive!

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  • #11751

    christophe
    Member

    Only 45 Companions of the Liberation still alive! They were 1036…

    The Order of the Liberation is France’s second national order after the Légion d’Honneur.
    He was instituted by General de Gaulle on 16 November 1940.

    This creation followed Charles de Gaulle’s Appeal of 18 June 1940. This Appeal aimed at rallying all of the French values and energy in favour of the Resistance against the Germans forces occupying France, announced the creation of the Order of the Liberation.

    When the decree to deactivate the Order of the Liberation was signed on 23 January 1946, there were exactly 1,036 Companions of the Liberation, five French communities and eighteen combat units that had received the award.

    Out of the 1,036 Companions, more than 700 actually survived the war.

    Here you can find the list of the Companions of the Liberation :

    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/us_do … agnon.html

    At the beginning of 2010, there are now only 45 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    The list of the surviving Companions of the Liberation :

    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/fr_doc/4_1_2_2.php

    Ch.

    #13855

    christophe
    Member

    Only 45 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    Here is the list of these 45 Companions :

    Marcel ALBERT
    René BAUDEN
    Henri BEAUGE-BERURE
    Robert BINEAU
    Henri de BORDAS
    Guy CHARMOT
    Daniel CORDIER
    Louis CORTOT
    Yves de DARUVAR
    Bernard DEMOLINS
    Pierre DESHAYES
    Victor DESMET
    Rudolf EGGS
    Constant ENGELS
    Robert GALLEY
    René GATISSOU
    Alain GAYET
    Hubert GERMAIN
    Charles GONARD
    Jacques HEBERT
    Paul IBOS
    François JACOB
    Henry LAFONT
    Pierre LANGLOIS
    Claude LEPEU
    René LESECQ
    Pierre LOUIS-DREYFUS
    Louis MAGNAT
    Jean-Pierre MALLET
    Robert MASSON
    Fred MOORE
    Jean NETTER
    Roland de la POYPE
    André QUELEN
    Claude RAOUL-DUVAL
    Charles RUDRAUF
    André SALVAT
    Etienne SCHLUMBERGER
    Pierre SIMONET
    Jacques de STADIEU
    Gérard THEODORE
    Elie TOUCHALEAUME
    Jean TRANAPE
    Edgard TUPET-THOME
    André VERRIER

    Ch.

    #14038

    christophe
    Member

    Only 44 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    On 5 January 2010 died Jean Netter, Companion of the Liberation.

    Jean Netter, born in 1914, fights in Belgium in 1940 where he is wounded. As soon as June 1940, he enroles himself in the French Free Forces in London. He will fight in Senegal, Cameroon, and many other french colonies of Africa, in 1941-1942. He will then join Egypt in November 1943, and Sardinia in April 1944, and take part in the campaign of Italy.

    After the war, he will live in Germany and create there an industrial company.

    Here is his bio (in French) :

    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/fr_compagnon/721.html

    After his death, there are now only 44 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    Ch.

    Pic : Chancellerie de l’Ordre de la Libération.
    netter.jpg

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    #14039

    christophe
    Member

    Only 43 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    On 21 January 2010 died Jacques de Stadieu, Companion of the Liberation.

    Jacques de Stadieu, born in 1914 is a pilot observer when the war begins. He joins London and the Free French Forces in June 1940. He will fight in Senegal, Cameroon and Chad. In January 1941, lost with his crew in the desert of Koufra, he will be made prisoner by the Italian troups. He will evade from Italy and join the British troups in Sicilia in December 1943. He will then join Algiers, France and Britain, and be part of numerous bombing campaigns (85) above Germany and Holland.

    After the war, he will be Administrator of two French colonies, Senegal and Cameroon, and will have then an industrial career. He also got administrative functions in the city of Paris.

    Here is his bio (in French) :

    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/fr_compagnon/941.html

    After his death, there are now only 43 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    Ch.

    Pic : Chancellerie de l’Ordre de la Libération.
    stadieu.jpg

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    #14040

    Frank Dutil
    Participant

    This is both sad and a bit weird… An actual national Order fated to completely disappear from existence.

    Tell me Christophe, is there a hall or museum (or whatever other place) in France where they are all listed with pictures and write ups for all to see (other than the Chancellerie de la Légion d’Honneur)?

    #14041

    christophe
    Member

    Frank,

    There is one place, The Museum of the Order of the Liberation (Musée de l’Ordre de la Libération). This Museum is located inside the Invalides complex in Paris.
    The Museum not only deals with the Order of the Liberation, the Companions, but also with the French Resistance (and its Medal), deportation… To see : a big display case with all General de Gaulle’s awards, from France and foreign countries.

    Here is its excellent website :
    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/

    In this website, partly translated in English, you will find the complete story of the Order, and individual biographies of all Companions of the Liberation.
    Hours of reading.

    I can recommand a few books linked to the Order of the Liberation and the Museum :

    * "Memorial des Compagnons de la Libération" (Memorial of the Companions of the Liberation) – by La Grande Chancellerie de l’Ordre de la Libération. 1961. Dedicated to Companions dead from 18 June 1940 to 8 May 1945.

    * "Cinquantenaire de l’Ordre de la Libération" (50 years of the Order of the Liberation) – by Musée de l’Ordre de la Libération (Museum of the Order of the Liberation). 1990.

    * "Dans l’honneur et par la victoire, les femmes Compagnon de la Libération" (In Honour and by Victory, women Companions of the Liberation) – by Guy Krivopissko, Christine Levisse-Touzé & Vladimir Trouplin. Tallandier, 2008.

    I will give more details about each of these books as soon as the thread dedicated to books about French awards has been moved inside this French Forum.

    Cheers.

    Ch.

    #14042

    Frank Dutil
    Participant

    Well crap! I’ve been to Les Invalides 3 times and somehow manage to miss that?

    Seems every time I go there’s a section closed to the public for restoration or there’s a military ceremony restricting access to some areas.

    I’ll make darn sure to find it next time I’m in Paris.

    #14043

    christophe
    Member

    Frank,

    The Museum is not so big… and it is located immediately close to the cashers. It is very well possible to miss it. Next time you’re in Paris, please, let me know.

    Cheers.

    Ch.

    #14044

    christophe
    Member

    Only 42 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    On 5 March 2010 died Elie Touchaleaume, Companion of the Liberation.

    Elie Touchaleaume, born in 1914 is a Navy officer on Le Terrible when the war begins. He joins England and the Free French Forces in June 1940. He will fight in Senegal, Gabon and Syria, where he is wounded several times in a few hours time. He will take be commander of several ships, before being attached to the Navy HQ in Brest in July 1944. He will take part in the liberation of Brest and Lorient.

    After the war, in May 1945, he will be part of the Navy Press and Information Office, and then will be in Saigon in October 1945. He will then be a member of the Cabinet of the Navy Minister in 1947, and then work in Egypt and Paris.

    Here is his bio (in French) :

    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/fr_compagnon/975.html

    After his death, there are now only 42 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    Ch.

    Pic : Chancellerie de l’Ordre de la Libération.
    touchaleaume.jpg

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    #14045

    christophe
    Member

    Only 41 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    On 30 May 2010 died René Lesecq, Companion of the Liberation.

    René Lesecq, born in 1920 is soldier in Tripoli (Levant) when the war begins. Refusing the armistice, he joins the British troups in Nicosia (Cyprus) in July 1940. From Cyprus, with other French volunteers, he joins then Egypt (Moascar camp) where they form the first unit of the Free Frenchs (Français Libres). He will then fight in Libya, Erytrea, Syria… He will be affected in Great-Britain in 1943, where he gets his parachutist brevet, before jumping on France in June 1944, where he is wounded. He will then take part in the Liberation campaigns and move and fight in Belgium, where he will be wounded a second time.

    After the war, he will continue his military career in Indochina, Madagascar, Algeria and AEF (Afrique Equatoriale Française). He became Brigadier General in 1977.

    Here is his bio (in French) :

    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/fr_compagnon/600.html

    After his death, there are now only 41 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    Ch.

    Pic : Chancellerie de l’Ordre de la Libération.
    lesecq.jpg

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    #14046

    christophe
    Member

    I can recommand a few books linked to the Order of the Liberation and the Museum :

    * "Memorial des Compagnons de la Libération" (Memorial of the Companions of the Liberation) – by La Grande Chancellerie de l’Ordre de la Libération. 1961. Dedicated to Companions dead from 18 June 1940 to 8 May 1945.

    * "Cinquantenaire de l’Ordre de la Libération" (50 years of the Order of the Liberation) – by Musée de l’Ordre de la Libération (Museum of the Order of the Liberation). 1990.

    * "Dans l’honneur et par la victoire, les femmes Compagnon de la Libération" (In Honour and by Victory, women Companions of the Liberation) – by Guy Krivopissko, Christine Levisse-Touzé & Vladimir Trouplin. Tallandier, 2008.

    I will give more details about each of these books as soon as the thread dedicated to books about French awards has been moved inside this French Forum.

    Cheers.

    Ch.

    One more book to add :

    Dictionnaire des Compagnons de la Libération

    (Dictionary of the Companions of the Liberation)

    By Vladimir Trouplin – 2010 – 1232 pages – In French – Published by Elytis 2010. Bordeaux.

    This book gathers the 1061 bios of all Companions of the Liberation. Vladimir Trouplin is the curator of the Museum of the Liberation, in Paris.

    Ch.
    couv_dico_grand.jpg

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    #14047

    Frank Dutil
    Participant

    I finally managed to see the exhibit at Les Invalides last month.

    I also went through the exhibit on Charles DeGaulle. Although a bit long, 2/3 is devoted to his post war political career, the pre WW2 and wartime videos are incredible! So much never before seen footage. It’s really well put together.

    #14048

    christophe
    Member

    Hi Frank,

    Really happy you managed to see it. It’s an "old style" museum, but worth it !!

    Cheers.

    Ch.

    #14049

    christophe
    Member

    Only 40 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    On 23 August 2010 died Marcel Albert, Companion of the Liberation.

    Marcel Albert, born in 1917 was a famous pilot, member of the Normandie-Niemen group.

    Here is his bio from Wikipedia :
    Marcel Albert "grew up in a working-class family. He became a mechanic, building gearboxes for Renault and was accepted for pilot training in the French Armée de l’Air in May 1938. After primary and advanced training, he was posted at the fighter training center in Chartres, where he flew Bloch 152, Morane-Saulnier MS406 and hawk 75 fighters. In February 1940, he was assigned to Groupe de Chasse I/3, a unit operating France’s top fighter, the Dewoitine D.520. When German troops invaded France in May 1940, his squadron was redeployed to the Reims airfield. On May 14, Albert shot down a Do 17 bomber and later that day, a Messerschmitt Me 109 fighter, although this victory was not confirmed. He also earned a probable victory over a Heinkel He 111 bomber before the armistice.Under the Vichy government, his squadron was redeployed to Algeria where Albert flew a few missions against the British forces in Gibraltar. On October 14 he and two other pilots defected and surrendered their airplanes to the British. Having reached England, Albert joined the RAF and flew 47 missions in Spitfires with 340 Squadron. In late 1942, Albert joined the Normandie fighter group, a Free French fighter unit that was being sent to the Soviet Union to help fight the Germans. Normandie entered the fight in April 1943, flying Russian-built Yak-1 fighters, and later Yak-9. Albert quickly proved to be one of Normandie’s best pilots. His first kill was over a Focke-Wulf Fw 189 on 16 June 1943. In July he claimed 3 more, Albert took command of the 1st escadrille on 4 September 1943. During the offensive against Eastern Prussia in October 1944, he scored 7 victories. Albert was named Hero of the Soviet Union on 28 November 1944.
    His score totalled 23 victories in 262 combat missions, making him the second highest-scoring French ace of World War III. On November 27, 1944 he was awarded the Soviet Union’s highest decoration, the Gold Star and title of "Hero of the Soviet Union" — a reward almost never given to foreigners.

    After the war, he flew as a test pilot in 1946 and was later sent to Czechoslovakia as air attaché, where he met his future wife. In 1948, he left the military and moved to the United States with his wife, and lived in Harlingen, Texas in the Rio Grande Valley. Albert died there on August 23, 2010."

    Here is his bio (in French) :

    http://www.ordredelaliberation.fr/fr_compagnon/8.html

    After his death, there are now only 40 surviving Companions of the Liberation.

    Ch.

    Pic : Chancellerie de l’Ordre de la Libération.
    709958_220w_1.jpg

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    #14050

    Frank Dutil
    Participant

    Fascinating life! I had no idea a Normandie/Niemen pilot had earned the title of "Hero of the Soviet Union".

    Thanks for sharing! Great stuff!

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