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My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

Article about: Hi. I will post pictures of my late father-in-law's medals, pay books, etc, but among his medals he was awarded the Krzyż Walecznych in late 44 (perhaps as late as December) for an acti

  1. #1

    Default My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    Hi.

    I will post pictures of my late father-in-law's medals, pay books, etc, but among his medals he was awarded the Krzyż Walecznych in late 44 (perhaps as late as December) for an action along the Adriatic/Gothic Line.

    We have the original pinkish card that states he was awarded and is entitled to wear it and when it was issued, along with the rest of his unit cap badges, insignia, etc. He served with the 5th Kresowa, 13th ' Wilenski' Inf Battalion (Batalion Strzelcow ‘Rysiow’), and had been a POW in southern Italy (after being captured by Tito's (or British?) forces on a Adriatic Island off the Yugoslavian coast) until joining up with the II Polish Corps in June of 44. Remarkably, one of his brothers had found his way in II Polish Corps and the two reunited at a parade in April 1945, each believing the other lost in the war.

    I tried one agency in the UK but they were unable to tell me why my late father-in-law was awarded the Krzyż Walecznych. I have had my wife do her best to read the 13th's unit diaries but I can find no mention of the action. With the Krzyż Walecznych slip of paper there is a number ... would that help figure out why he was awarded it? Or is this sort of thing lost to the ravages of time?

    Many thanks, pictures to come later.
    Last edited by DaveyJJ; 09-20-2011 at 08:36 PM.

  2. #2
    ?

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    Hello Davey, ... and welcome to the forum.

    If you post your father-in-laws name here, .. there are a few members who might be able to help ....

    If not, a letter to the Sikorski Institute with details might be the way forward.

    (Check out the pinned thread on researching exile Polish Combatants).

    Cheers

    Gary J.

  3. #3

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    Thanks, Gary. I believe it was the Sikorski Institute (in London? I'm at work right now and unable to look at the files I have) that we wrote to a few years back and they were unable to locate the information. I will review the other links and suggestions in that pinned topic with my wife when I get home.

    I seem to recall we also did write the MOD and actually receive a number of medals for my late father-in-law that he had not been given (?) after being awarded.

    My late father-in-law's name was Sylwester Janik.
    Last edited by DaveyJJ; 09-20-2011 at 08:14 PM.

  4. #4

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    The "Legitymacja" card is numbered 8658. Pictures to follow shortly.

  5. #5

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    OK, hopefully these aren't too big. They include ID tags, medals etc. Tell me if I've posted these wrong, btw. My father-in-law's rank seems to have been "strz" which I believe is Rifleman.

    The CRoss of Valour is 44mm across in size, tip to tip.

    I have additional questions ... The diamond shaped, purple unit "badge" with the Lynx ... is that the 13th badge? Also, the medal without ribbon that says "KRN" on the reverse ... what is that? And finally, the "M. p.," on the certificate for the Cross of Valour ... is that the issued date or earned date?

    Thanks.
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    Last edited by DaveyJJ; 09-21-2011 at 03:44 AM.

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    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    Forgot to post this one too ...
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  7. #7

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    A few more (new) details in case anyone has any more ideas ...

    My father-in-law served with 2 Rifle Company, 13th 'Wilenski' Infantry Battalion, according to a letter we received from the MOD. The Battalion Orders are number 33/45 indicate that it was awarded for his valour in the actions along the Senio River (but the dates are confusing to me ... Jan 2 1945 was when the actions started and he had this awarded by Feb 18? Seems fast to me.). That's as much as the MOD can tell us. Judging from his picture above he'd been awarded the Cross already as the chest ribbons (?) match what I have.

  8. #8

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    Super! Your family must be very proud of this brave man. I will hoist one tonight in his honor and memory. Thanks for sharing these wonderful family heirlooms. God bless him. Jim G.

  9. #9

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    We are.

    Can anyone tell me on the Cross of Valour certificate card ... the M.p., 18/II/1945 ... is that the day tata was awarded/presented the medal, or the day of action he actually won the thing? Anyone know? (That date seems to line up passably with the MOD's reference to Battalion Order 33/45, given that not every day would battalion orders come down.)

  10. #10

    Default Re: My late father-in-law's Krzyż Walecznych (Cross of Valour)

    Hi Davey,

    Some answers . . .

    Quote by DaveyJJ View Post
    . . . My father-in-law's rank seems to have been "strz" which I believe is Rifleman.
    The rank equivalent is that of a Private

    Quote by DaveyJJ View Post
    I have additional questions ... The diamond shaped, purple unit "badge" with the Lynx ... is that the 13th badge? . . .
    Yes, this is the beret badge of the 13th Wilenski Rifle Battalion – nicknamed ‘the Lynxes’.

    Any chance at some good close up pictures of this badge, front and back?

    Quote by DaveyJJ View Post
    . . . the medal without ribbon that says "KRN" on the reverse ... what is that?
    The Silesian Uprising Cross. This is a Soviet occupation era decoration awarded to soldiers of any of the three Silesian uprisings against Germany (1919, 1920 and 1921) and also to members of the Polish Resistance in Silesia in the years 1939-1945.

    Quote by DaveyJJ View Post
    . . . And finally, the "M. p.," on the certificate for the Cross of Valour ... is that the issued date or earned date? . . .

    Can anyone tell me on the Cross of Valour certificate card ... the M.p., 18/II/1945 ... is that the day tata was awarded/presented the medal, or the day of action he actually won the thing? Anyone know? (That date seems to line up passably with the MOD's reference to Battalion Order 33/45, given that not every day would battalion orders come down.)
    It is the issue date.

    Thanks for posting pictures of these items

    Regards,
    Tony
    All thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical and/or legal advice.

    "Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday." - John Wayne

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