Military medals and badges, many donated by Shuswap residents, are respectfully displayed at the Salmon Arm Royal Canadian Legion, Branch #62. Next to each display case is a legend of the items within. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Military medals and badges, many donated by Shuswap residents, are respectfully displayed at the Salmon Arm Royal Canadian Legion, Branch #62. Next to each display case is a legend of the items within. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Historic military medals, badges kept in place of respect at Salmon Arm legion

One medal dates back to 1816-17, issued to those who fought against Napoleon

A history of military service dating as far back as 1816 adorns a number of the walls at the Salmon Arm Royal Canadian Legion branch 62.

Straight ahead and to the left from the Legion’s main entrance is a hallway decorated by several large picture frames displaying military medals, ribbons and badges. Next to each frame are legends explaining what each piece is, in some cases who they were donated by and, where applicable, who they were awarded to.

One of the oldest pieces is a Waterloo Medal, which was issued in 1816 and 1817 to every officer of the British Army who took part in the June 1815 battles of Ligny, Quatre Bras and Waterloo, during which the French army under Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte was defeated by the British-led Seventh Coalition.

Several other older medals on display were awarded to those who fought in the Crimean War (1854-56), and the second South African War (October 1889 to May 1902). In addition to these there are numerous medals awarded to individuals from the Shuswap for service in the first and second world wars.

“Most of the ones that are up on the wall are from people that are here from the Salmon Arm area,” said Legion branch 62 member, Canadian Forces veteran and local historian Harry Welton.

The display serves to commemorate those who have served their country and provide a home for the historic hardware where it will be appreciated.

Read more: Shuswap Royal Canadian Legion branches happy to be open again

Read more: Sicamous Legion adjusts Remembrance Day to pandemic

“It’s been going that way for the last few years,” said Welton.

“I’d collected medals and stuff off, and then when I came here they had a whole bunch of medals so we built frames for them and they’re all mounted on the wall with the people’s names on them so their families come in and see them.

“If they ever want them, they can have them back.”

While some of the medals, particularly those made of silver, can go for a very high price, Welton said they tend to be melted down solely for the precious metal. Welton would rather see unwanted medals and badges be preserved for future generations.

For Canadians who may have lost their medals and want them back (assuming they are not on the Legion’s walls), Welton said to contact Veterans Affairs Canada, which is responsible for first issue or replacement medals for those who served in the Second World War, the Merchant Navy and the Korean War. This can be arranged by calling 1-877-741-8332, or by visiting the veterans.gc.ca.

According to the Royal Canadian Legion, if you have tried to obtain replacement medals but have been unsuccessful, or if you are in need of advice on related subjects such as recovering stolen medals, identifying medals, returning found medals to family, or displaying medals, contact the Legion’s Medals Adviser at info@legion.ca (indicate in the subject line “For Medals Adviser”).

Remembrance Day

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The giant Christmas tree lights up downtown Salmon Arm on Dec. 1, 2017. (File photo)
COVID-19: Holiday Market, Tree Light-up in Salmon Arm cancelled

Downtown Salmon Arm makes change in response to protocols from provincial health officer

The team of horses is ready to pull riders for Caravan Farm Theatre’s sold-out Winter Sleigh-Ride Show of the Gift from Dec. 8-Jan.2. The Spallumcheen theatre company wants the province to include live theatre on its list of businesses allowed to operate during COVID-19. (File photo)
Spallumcheen theatre group plans for socially safe winter show to go on

Caravan Farm Theatre asks province to include live theatre on lists of businesses allowed to operate

Missy MacKintosh, founder/CEO with MisMacK Clean Costmetics, has been chosen one of the top 100 Canadian businesses in Canada’s Total Mom Pitch, with the next round going to public voting. (White Willow Photography)
Salmon Arm’s MisMacK cosmetics hits top 100 in women’s entrepreneur program

To reach the finals, participants must garner votes on website

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
104 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health

IH is reporting the new numbers since Friday, Nov. 20

School District 83 trustees voted in support of a 2.2 per cent increase to their remuneration, with the adjustment based on the Consumer Price Index. (File photo)
North Okanagan-Shuswap trustees remain status quo on pay increase

School District 83 trustee suggests linking remuneration to student numbers

People wearing face masks to help curb the spread of COVID-19 cross a street in downtown Vancouver, on Sunday, November 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. reports 17 COVID deaths, 1,933 new cases as hospitalizations surge over the weekend

There are 277 people in hospital, of whom 59 are in ICU or critical care

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers at the project site in Kitimat. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared last Thursday (Nov. 19). (Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
Forty-one positive COVID-19 cases associated with the LNG Canada site outbreak in Kitimat

Thirty-four of the 41 cases remain active, according to Northern Health

A concept rendering of the proposed Costco at the corner of Baron, Leckie and Springfield roads. (WSP Global)
Contentious Kelowna Costco relocation moved to public hearing

Costco looking to move less than a kilometre away to build a larger store with more parking, gas bar

7-year-old Mackenzie Hodge from Penticton sent a hand-written letter to premiere John Horgan asking if she’d be able to see her elf, Ralph under the new coronavirus restrictions. (John Horgan / Twitter)
Elf on the shelf an acceptable house guest B.C. premier tells Okanagan girl

A 7-year-old from Penticton penned a letter asking if she’d be allowed to see her elf this year

Workers arrive at the Lynn Valley Care Centre seniors home, in North Vancouver, B.C., on Saturday, March 14, 2020. It was the site of Canada’s first COVID-19 outbreak in a long-term care facility. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Rapid tests ‘not a panacea’ for care homes, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

B.C. lacks capacity for daily tests of thousands of workers

(Delta Police Department photo)
Cannabis edibles found in Halloween bag lead B.C. police to illegal lab

Delta police arrested a man and a woman while executing a warrant at a residential property Nov. 20

RCMP pictured at a motor vehicle incident during snowy conditions. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
B&E, stolen car in Vernon lands Whitehorse man in cuffs

Suspect takes off on foot in attempts to evade arrest

Most Read