Medal Commemorative of the 30th Anniversary of the Polish 1st Grenadier Division in France
Inscribed ‘D1G’ for the Polish 1st Grenadiers Division (Dywizja Grenadierów / 1ère Division des Grenadiers) at the base above a circumscription ‘4444 WYKONAC’; the reverse with a Cross of Lorraine bottony, dated ‘1940 1970’ below; on a ribbon in the Polish national colours. The medal was awarded to surviving members of the Polish 1st Grenadier Division in 1970 to mark the 30th anniversary of the participation of the Division in the Battle of France. The unit was formed in France from expatriate Poles, mainly from the mining areas of northern France and Belgium, after the fall of Poland in autumn 1939. By mid-1940, it numbered just over 16,000 officers and men and was heavily involved in the Battle of France in June 1940, giving an excellent account of itself but losing more than 5,000 men in the process. The inscription ‘4444 WYKONAC’ is said to be from the codeword issued to the unit after the fall of France instructing it to make its way to Switzerland or Britain. The medal is rare.
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