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November 7, 2017 By Shirley Arnold

French Legion of Honor Medal Recipient

At his official residence in San Francisco in July, the Consul General of France awarded Dan Dougherty, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, the Legion of Honor medal. The Legion of Honor, France’s highest order of merit, is conferred upon men and women for outstanding achievements in military or civilian life. Dan was designated Chevalier (Knight) of the Order, decreed by President Emmanuel Macron of France.

During World War II, Dan served in three campaigns in France and Germany. In the 44th Infantry Division in France, Dan’s regiment began fighting in October 1944 near Luneville, France and assisted the 2nd French Armored Division in liberating Strasbourg in November 1944. As squad leader and platoon guide with the 45th Division, Dan’s rifle company helped liberate the Dachau concentration camp on April 29, 1945 where 2,907 of the 31,432 prisoners freed were French. After a night sleeping in the former quarters of the Nazi SS officers, Dan and his platoon went on to liberate thousands more prisoners at the Dachau satellite camp in Allach.

The French Legion of Honor medal ceremony began with a welcome by Emmanuel Lebrun-Damiens, Consul General of France in San Francisco. Following the French and U.S. national anthems, the awards were presented to Dan and the celebration concluded with a champagne reception.

Dan and his wife, Norma, were accompanied to San Francisco by 26 family members as well as friends from Paradise Valley Estates. Family attending were sons and wives, Dave and Julie Dougherty from Bainbridge Island, Washington; Phil and Laurie Dougherty from Novato; grandson, Joe Dougherty from Dallas, Texas; nephew, Park and Martha Dougherty from Charleston, South Carolina; nieces, Francie Dougherty Snoy, from Poolesville, Maryland, and Mary Park and her husband, Kamel Oussayef from Winchester, Massachusetts.

 

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French Consul General Emmanuel Lebrun-Damiens and PVE Resident Dan Dougherty

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