Louis Bloom, a resident at the Masonic care home Lord Harris Court in Berkshire, has been presented with the insignia of the Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur, the highest decoration in France.
French President Hollande announced on the 70th anniversary of D-Day in 2014 that The Legion of Honour would be awarded to all surviving D-Day veterans.
French Ambassador Madame Sylvie Bermann presented the award to Mr Bloom and offered her “warmest congratulations on this high honour”. Recognising his involvement in the liberation of France during WWII she added: “we owe our freedom and security to your dedication because you were ready to risk your life.”
Mr Bloom served the Royal Navy on an arctic convoy in 1940, for which he received the Arctic Star award in 2015. He trained as a radar mechanic he served on HMS Fancy, an Algerine class minesweeper. HMS Fancy was one of the ships sweeping the Channel of mines on 6 June in order to ensure safe passage for the invasion fleet.
Lord Harris Court in Berkshire is a Masonic care home operated by the Royal Masonic Benevolent Institution (RMBI). The RMBI runs over 17 Masonic care homes across England and Wales and provides residential and nursing care, specialist dementia support and day services to over 1,000 people. For more information about the RMBI, please visit: www.rmbi.org.uk.