American Awards and Decorations

The following American awards were made to soldiers of the Worcestershire Regiment for gallantry or meritorious service. They are recorded in the London Gazette, indicating the granting of the award or decoration by the President of the USA, and intimating the British sovereigns permission for it to be accepted and worn by the recipient.

Legion of Merit

The Legion of Merit is a military decoration of the United States armed forces which is awarded for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services and achievements. The decoration is issued both to United States military personnel and to military and political figures of foreign governments.

This award was established by an Act of Congress on 29th July 1942. It is probably the nearest thing the US has to a European style Order, in that it has four classes, namely:
Chief Commander

Although members of the US armed forces are eligible to receive this, they normally only qualify for the lowest grade, Legionnaire. The upper grades (Chief Commander, Commander and Officer) are typically reserved for very senior officers or foreign nationals.

Legion of Merit

The degrees of Chief Commander, Commander, Officer, and Legionnaire are awarded only to members of armed forces of foreign nations under the criteria outlined in Army Regulation 672-7 and is based on the relative rank or position of the recipient as follows:

1. Chief Commander - Chief of State or Head of Government.

2. Commander - Equivalent of an U.S. military Chief of Staff or higher position but not to Chief of State.

3. Officer - General of Flag Officer below the equivalent of a U.S. military Chief of Staff; Colonel or equivalent rank for service in assignments equivalent to those normally held by a General or Flag Officer in U.S. military service; or Military Attaches.

4. Legionnaire - All recipients not included above.

The Legion of Merit is seventh in the order of precedence of U.S. military decorations, and is worn after the Defense Superior Service Medal and before the Distinguished Flying Cross.

Legion of Merit (U.S.A.)





Award Class

Gazette Date

Glenn, O.B.E.

Maurice James



Degree of Legionnaire


Gale, K.B.E., C.B., D.S.O., M.C.

Richard Nelson



Degree of Commander


Sir Richard Nelson Gale, K.B.E., C.B., D.S.O., M.C.

Sir Richard Gale was born in London on the 25th July 1896, and was brought up in Australia until he was 10 years old, before going in succession to three schools, the King Edward VII at Stratford-on-Avon, The Merchant Taylor's School and Aldenham. After Royal Military College at Sandhurst he joined the 5th Battalion Worcestershire Regiment in 1915 and was for the major portion of the 1914-18 war attached to the Machine Gun Corps. It was as an officer of that fine Corps that he won the Military Cross. After the war he served with both the 3rd and 1st Battalions Worcestershire Regiment in India. In 1930 he received accelerated promotion into the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry. There followed a period on the Staff, first as Brigade Major at Ferozepore and later at the War Office. World War II was to bring General Gale a rich and varied experience of command. After commanding a Battalion of the Leicestershire Regiment he was appointed to command No. 1 Parachute Brigade.

In 1943 and 1944 he commanded the 6th Airborne Division, and in 1945 he commanded the 1st Airborne Corps. Thus the responsibility for vital aspects of the campaign in Normandy and Belgium was upon his shoulders. After the war he commanded the 1st Infantry Division and later was G.O.C., British Troops, in Egypt. His services in France had won him the D.S.O., and he was created C.B. in 1945 and a Commander of the Legion of Merit, U.S.A., in 1948.

He was appointed Colonel of the Worcestershire Regiment on 20th April 1950.

In the King’s birthday honours, 1950, he was created K.B.E. General Gale then became the Director-General of Military Training at the War Office.

After the Second World War he commanded the Rhine Army, a post that he relinquished in 1957 on retirement, only to return to active soldiering the following year when he succeeded Field-Marshal Montgomery as Deputy Supreme Allied Commander, Europe.

In 1968 he wrote his autobiography "Call to Arms" published by Hutchinson & Co. ( Publishers ) Ltd, London.

General Sir Richard Gale died in Kingston Hospital on the 29th July 1982 (age 86).


Lieut.-General Sir Richard Nelson Gale
(known as "windy" Gale)

Silver Star Medal

Silver Star Medal

On the 19th July 1932, the U.S. Secretary of War approved the Silver Star medal to replace the Citation Star (which was established in 1918). This design placed the Citation Star on a bronze pendant suspended from the ribbon design. The star was no longer attached to a service or campaign ribbon.

The Silver Star Medal is awarded to a person for gallantry in action against an enemy of the United States while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force. The required gallantry, while of a lesser degree than that required for award of the Distinguished Service Cross, must nevertheless have been performed with marked distinction. Soldiers who received a citation for gallantry in action during World War 1 may apply to have the citation converted to the Silver Star Medal.


Silver Star Medal (U.S.A.)





Gazette Date


Oliver Bert




Oliver Bert Miles was born in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales on the 19th December 1912. He joined ‘D’ Company of the 1st Battalion Worcestershire Regiment and became a Corporal in 16 Platoon. He landed in Normandy with 16 Platoon. Later he was promoted to Sergeant. He died in Mid Warwickshire in 2002, age 89

His Citation for the Silver Star Medal read:
“This NCO greatly distinguished himself by gallantry in action during the fighting in the GEILENKIRCHEN area last November, when the Division was attacking in conjunction with a USA Infantry Division on its right. On 18th November 1944, the 1st Battalion The Worcestershire Regiment attacked and took the villages of RISCHDEN and TRIPSRATH. During the attack Sergeant MILES commanded the leading section of the leading Platoon fearlessly leading his men in clearing dense woods under heavy LMG, Mortar and shell fire. His dash and leadership greatly assisted the speed of the men. A few hours after the village was taken the enemy counter attacked fiercely with tanks and infantry. Sergeant MILES, his Platoon Commander and Platoon Sergeant having become casualties, was commanding the greatly depleted Platoon which was holding a portion of the village perimeter, in defensive positions in gardens and houses. Under heavy fire, in close contact with the enemy, with complete disregard for his own safety, Sergeant MILES was tireless in moving round his Platoon area, encouraging his men, pointing out targets, and generally raising morale during several hours heavy fighting in which Sergeant MILES’ Platoon repelled several attacks from superior numbers. His courage, leadership and careless exposure of his won person were important factors in the successful repelling of this serious and determined enemy attack in this sector.”

Sgt. Oliver Bert Miles