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TITLE
King George VI presenting the George Medal to Corp. James McCabe
EXTERNAL ID
PC_NURSES3_008
PLACENAME
Inverness
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
INVERNESS: Inverness and Bona
DATE OF IMAGE
24 June 1948
PERIOD
1940s
SOURCE
Nurses League of Inverness Hospitals
ASSET ID
29447
KEYWORDS
hospitals
healthcare
royalty
royal visits
decorations
honours
King George VI presenting the George Medal to Corp. James McCabe

King George VI presenting the George Medal to 29 year old Corporal James McKay McCabe outside The Royal Northern Infirmary, Inverness. Corporal McCabe, from Glenlivet, was awarded the medal for attempting to rescue the crew of a burning aircraft in Italy in 1944. He had been a patient at Raigmore Hospital since 1946.

Queen Elizabeth can be seen underneath the umbrella.

The George Medal is the second level civil decoration of the United Kingdom and Commonwealth and was instituted on 24 September 1940 by King George VI. The medal is primarily a civilian award; however it is occasionally awarded to military personnel for gallant conduct which was not in the face of the enemy.

The following is an account of the incident as reported in the London Gazette:

"991199 Leading Aircraftman James McKay McCabe, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.
1177914 Leading Aircraftman Leonard Maynard Williams, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.

One evening in February 1944, these airmen displayed exceptional courage and devotion to duty when an aircraft, carrying a full bomb load, crashed and caught fire. Leading Aircraftman Williams, who was nearby, was one of the first to arrive at the scene of the accident, and, in spite of exploding ammunition and the danger of the bombs exploding, he succeeded in rescuing the rear gunner. Then, with the assistance of 2 others, he proceeded to take the gunner to safety; the first bomb exploded when they were only 50 yards away. Leading Aircraftman McCabe, a nursing orderly, arrived in the ambulance within 4 minutes of the aircraft crashing. The first bomb had exploded and, although fully aware that others were likely to detonate at any moment, he continued to the aircraft and located a member of the crew who was, unfortunately, dead. Leading Aircraftman McCabe helped to remove the body to a place of safety. When only 30 yards away from the aircraft, a second bomb exploded and no further rescues could be effected. These airmen displayed high courage and complete disregard of their personal safety."

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King George VI presenting the George Medal to Corp. James McCabe

INVERNESS: Inverness and Bona

1940s

hospitals; healthcare; royalty; royal visits; decorations; honours

Nurses League of Inverness Hospitals

Nurses League of Inverness Hospitals

King George VI presenting the George Medal to 29 year old Corporal James McKay McCabe outside The Royal Northern Infirmary, Inverness. Corporal McCabe, from Glenlivet, was awarded the medal for attempting to rescue the crew of a burning aircraft in Italy in 1944. He had been a patient at Raigmore Hospital since 1946.<br /> <br /> Queen Elizabeth can be seen underneath the umbrella. <br /> <br /> The George Medal is the second level civil decoration of the United Kingdom and Commonwealth and was instituted on 24 September 1940 by King George VI. The medal is primarily a civilian award; however it is occasionally awarded to military personnel for gallant conduct which was not in the face of the enemy.<br /> <br /> The following is an account of the incident as reported in the London Gazette:<br /> <br /> "991199 Leading Aircraftman James McKay McCabe, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.<br /> 1177914 Leading Aircraftman Leonard Maynard Williams, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.<br /> <br /> One evening in February 1944, these airmen displayed exceptional courage and devotion to duty when an aircraft, carrying a full bomb load, crashed and caught fire. Leading Aircraftman Williams, who was nearby, was one of the first to arrive at the scene of the accident, and, in spite of exploding ammunition and the danger of the bombs exploding, he succeeded in rescuing the rear gunner. Then, with the assistance of 2 others, he proceeded to take the gunner to safety; the first bomb exploded when they were only 50 yards away. Leading Aircraftman McCabe, a nursing orderly, arrived in the ambulance within 4 minutes of the aircraft crashing. The first bomb had exploded and, although fully aware that others were likely to detonate at any moment, he continued to the aircraft and located a member of the crew who was, unfortunately, dead. Leading Aircraftman McCabe helped to remove the body to a place of safety. When only 30 yards away from the aircraft, a second bomb exploded and no further rescues could be effected. These airmen displayed high courage and complete disregard of their personal safety."