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Archive for Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Lawrence man to receive French Medal of Honor

November 30, 2010

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Lawrence resident Medford H. Shively, 87, is pictured Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010, with the French Medal of Honor, which he was awarded for his service in France during World War II with the Cannon Company, 222nd Infantry Regiment, 42nd Infantry Division of the U.S. Army. Shively, who was named a Chevalier (Knight) of the Legion of Honor of the French Republic, will attend a ceremony Wednesday evening at the American Legion Post 400 in Topeka for the official presentation of the award.

Lawrence resident Medford H. Shively, 87, is pictured Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010, with the French Medal of Honor, which he was awarded for his service in France during World War II with the Cannon Company, 222nd Infantry Regiment, 42nd Infantry Division of the U.S. Army. Shively, who was named a Chevalier (Knight) of the Legion of Honor of the French Republic, will attend a ceremony Wednesday evening at the American Legion Post 400 in Topeka for the official presentation of the award.

World War II veteran Medford H. Shively will be presented with the French Medal of Honor and named a Chevalier (Knight) of the Legion of Honor of the French Republic for his service during the war.

Shively, 87, a longtime Topeka resident who now lives with his daughter, Theresa Shively-Porter, in Lawrence, served in the U.S. Army.

He fought in the Rhineland and central Europe as a member of the Cannon Company, 222nd Infantry Regiment, 42nd Infantry Division.

For his service in World War II, Shively was awarded the Bronze Star, the American Theater Medal, the European-African-Middle East Campaign Medal, the Good Conduct Medal and World War II Victory Medal. He also earned the Combat Infantry Badge and Rifle Sharp Shooter Medal.

His daughter said that about a year ago Shively read a newspaper article about the French Medal of Honor and thought he qualified. So the family applied, and in August he was notified by the French ambassador that he would receive the honor. French consulates in the United States distribute about 100 medals each year.

A formal ceremony presenting the award will take place at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the American Legion Post 400 in Topeka, at 3029 NW U.S. Highway 24.

After the war, Shively obtained a doctoral degree in business and was a businessman, then taught business at Kansas Wesleyan University before working for the Kansas Corporation Commission and then the Kansas Neurological Institute.

He and his wife, Juanita, had six children and were married 60 years. She died earlier this year.

Shively-Porter said her father never talked that much about his wartime experience, but she said that receiving the award is “pretty awesome.”

She added, “We’re just really excited for him and very proud he has gotten this award. It’s great for veterans to be shown this recognition.”

The Legion of Honor was created by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1802 to acknowledge great services rendered to France.

Maj. Gen. Tod Bunting, the adjutant general of Kansas, will present the award to Shively.

Comments

BorderRat 4 years ago

Congratulations Sir and Thank You for your service.

Jean1183 4 years ago

Congratulations and THANK YOU for your service!

christy kennedy 4 years ago

Congratulations and safe travels.

Vertigo, that was a stupid thing to say.

mbulicz 4 years ago

Others, a sense of decency.

/derail

Congratulations, Mr. Shively, and thank you for your service.

Khublai_Juan 4 years ago

Do you think that the American soldiers who were fighting in France didn't joke about the French army? I'm sure that jokes about the French being poor fighters were a regular part of the banter for soldiers. When you are facing death at all times like they were, you have to keep some semblance of a sense of humor and jokes like this would help lighten the extremely serious situation.

purplesage 4 years ago

To vertigo and hitme - this is not a joking matter. To suggest the purchase of German beer to celebrate is in horrible taste.

I read once that General Patton, upon setting foot on French soil as the liberation began, was heard to speak across the ages, saying in a hushed tone, "Lafayette, we are here." Remember from whom the Statue of Liberty was received. American - French ties have not always been as they have for the last couple of generations.

World War II had a clear, moral basis - a just war, if you will - and those who served deserve our respect . Those who served with particular valor deserve the recognition of our nation and of other nations served. The French Medal of Honor and recognition in the Legion are high honors. Congratulations, long over due.

oldbaldguy 4 years ago

Mr. Shively was in a cannon company of an infantry regiment. Those boys saw combat and took casualties. You did not rotate out after 12 months, you were in until wounded, killed or it ended. Some infantry regiments in the fighting in France through Germany were completely replaced due to losses.

God bless you Mr. Shively. France to this day recognizes what our men did for them.

bearded_gnome 4 years ago

Glad to see him get the medal he deserved.

I am grateful for his service. it is too easy for us, from this time and perspective to vastly underestimate the personal and corporate sacrifice it took.


However: LJWorld!* your article fails! please tell us what Mr. Shively did to qualify! the article says he read about the medal and felt he would qualify, that's all! was he recognized for particularly conspicuous personal action or actions? was he recognized for a particular battle or action by a unit?

please fill in these details.

notadiva 4 years ago

I can help with that. You need a Bronze Star or higher and have fought in France in specific campaigns.

U.S. veterans who helped in the liberation of France during World War II could be eligible to receive the French Legion of Honor Medal. This medal was previously only issued to WWI vets. Any previous military awards such as the Congressional Medal of Honor, the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, etc., would indicate meritorious actions during combat operations.

Those applying must have written documentation, which is normally a copy of his/her military separation order, DD - 214, and other official orders which verifies their military history during combat. Members of the Army, Army Air Corps, Navy and Coast Guard who participated in one of the four major campaigns in the liberation of France (Normandy, Southern France, Northern France and the Ardennes) are eligible for this French award.

This info can be found at:

http://www.omsa.org/forums/showthread.php?t=420

oldbaldguy 4 years ago

notadiva is correct. France does not have to do this, but they remember what our troops did to this day. Mr. Shively is a recipient of the Combat Infantryman Badge and the Bronze Star. He saw the elephant.

sundancewierdo 4 years ago

Congratulations on a well deserved honor! Thank you for representing our country in such an honorable fashion.

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