Double VC

Discussions on all aspects of the The United Kingdom & its Empire and Commonwealth during the Inter-War era and Second World War. Hosted by Andy H
User avatar
Pips
Member
Posts: 1194
Joined: 26 Jun 2005 08:44
Location: Canberra, ACT, Australia

Double VC

Post by Pips » 22 Jul 2021 12:30

Any person who won the VC should be admired and held in awe. Since it's inception in 1857 it has been awarded 1,358 times.

But what can be said of a soldier who has one it not once, but twice! Only once in it's history has the VC been awarded twice to a combat soldier. And that soldier is Charles Hazlitt Upham, an officer in the New Zealand 2nd Division.

His first VC was awarded for his actions on Crete in May 1941. Not for a single solitary act of high courage (the usual reason for the Award), but for several actions spread over the period 22 - 30 May, during which he was wounded twice.

The second award was made for his actions in July 1942, on the attack on El Ruweisat Ridge on the 14th–15th July, 1942. And again he was wounded several times but remained with his men.

Upham had also been nominated for the VC for his actions earlier at Minqar Qaim on 27 - 28 June. But given the most unusual circumstances of being nominated for a second VC, it was decided to combine Upham's actions at Minqar Qaim and El Ruweisat Ridge together for the second award.

A truly amazing man.

User avatar
Sheldrake
Member
Posts: 3094
Joined: 28 Apr 2013 17:14
Location: London

Re: Double VC

Post by Sheldrake » 22 Jul 2021 13:07

I am told that Upham was a relative by marriage of Noel Chevasse who was also awarded the VC twice.

User avatar
Waleed Y. Majeed
Member
Posts: 3615
Joined: 13 Nov 2004 11:37
Location: Aarhus, Denmark

Re: Double VC

Post by Waleed Y. Majeed » 22 Jul 2021 16:04

The third would be Surgeon Captain Arthur Martin-Leake.
Although not a “combat soldier” they were both awarded for “saving lives while under direct fire on the front line”. One for service during the Boer War and second during WW1.
http://www.vconline.org.uk/arthur-marti ... 4587555433
A old colleague of mine once gave me two 50p 2006 VC coins and told me the story. Think he was a relative or from same town or something similar.

Waleed

Return to “The United Kingdom & its Empire and Commonwealth 1919-45”