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EK1 1939 version 1957


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  • 2 months later...

Hello,

this 1st class cross is identical in any detail, to the piece presented along with the 2nd class, by the German Military Attaché to my father in 1970, when the Federal Republic confirmed the award of the First Class for the act of bravery done on May 30th 1942, Northern Africa, Bir el-Aslagh. The original conferment happened on May 31st, 1942.

Best,

E.L.

Edited by Elmar Lang
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2 hours ago, Elmar Lang said:

Hello,

this 1st class cross is identical in any detail, to the piece presented along with the 2nd class, by the German Military Attaché to my father in 1970, when the Federal Republic confirmed the award of the First Class for the act of bravery done on May 30th 1942, Northern Africa, Bir el-Aslagh. The original conferment happened on May 31st, 1942.

Best,

E.L.

Very interesting, I'm surprised it was awarded retrospectively after such a long period, bit late but better than never

Edited by Alex K
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It wasn't a "late award". Actually, the regular award took place, as said, on May 31st, 1942, as a reward for the action that took place on the previous day.

My late father, was an italian artillery officer, who fought in Northern Africa as a commander of an AA/AT battery.

He was taken prisoner on July 3rd, 1942 at Alam Nayil, close to the Qattara Depression. After the war, he remained in the army until his retirement in 1976.

When in 1957 the German military awards have been legalized, he immediately asked for the confirmation of his EK1, but his superiors stopped the advancement of his request, because "no nazi award could be authorized for wear!".

Years passed and while being with the rank of full colonel, his commander found correct to forward the request that my father tried once more to advance through the hierarchy.

In 1970, the German Government, having found archival evidence of the award, sent the "Ersatzurkunde" and, a while later, the German Military Attaché, during a little ceremony, consigned a case, containing the 1957-type 1st and 2nd Class crosses.

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I would like to add the picture of the presentation case with which the Military Attaché offered to my father the EK-I and EK-II, and a detail of the reverse of the 1st Class cross.

I think that the case was prepared in Rome, on behalf of the German Embassy's administration.

Further, a picture of my father's medal bar (the Silver "Al Valore Militare" medal, is a named duplicate).

All the best,

Enzo

EK Etui.jpg

EK I Reverse.jpg

Papà Medagliere.jpg

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To complete my contribution to this interesting thread, I would like to add a portrait of my father in full-dress, taken early in 1975 when, as a Major General, he received the Commander's Cross of the Merit Order of the Republic.

He is wearing the above pictured medal bar and EK-I.

All the best,

Enzo (E.L.)

Papà in uniforme.jpg

Edited by Elmar Lang
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As a conclusion, I've been able to take a picture of the "Ersatz-Urkunde", released by the Federal Republic of Germany, framed and at the wall, in my late father's study-room.

I think it could be considered as an interesting, rather uncommon document, especially for being given to a non-German.

The original "Urkunde", for what I know, should be somewhere in the desert's sands between Tobruk and Alamein...

 

Ersatz Urkunde.jpg

Edited by Elmar Lang
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