Decorations Received by Karst Smit

Karst Smit would become one of the, if not the, most highly decorated marechaussees from WWII.  On Nov. 21, 1946, in Amsterdam, Col. Johnson, the U.S. Miltary Attache, awarded Karst the Medal of Freedom with Silver Palm.  Only two such medals were awarded on this occasion along with 60 with the bronze palm.  Speakers at the event were the burgomaster of Amsterdam and the American Consul General in Amsterdam, Mr. Doyle, representing the U.S. Ambassador.  Click on the photo to enlarge it.

Karst Smit being awarded the “Medal of Freedom with Silver Palm.”

The following is a photo of all of Karst’s decorations.  Click on the photo to enlarge it.

Decorations Awarded to Karst Smit

I am indebted to Janine Marseille-Smit, Karst’s sister, for the photos.  She has written a book, Een Vlectwerk van Lijnen, The Hague, 2007, about Karst and his brother Romke.

A list of Karst’s decorations, as compiled by him in 2001, is as follows:

The Netherlands

  • Ridder in de Orde van Oranje Nassau benoemd door H.M. Koningin Beatrix op 27 mei 1982. (Knight of the Order of Orange Nassau, awarded by Her Majesty, Queen Beatrix, on 27 May 1982.)
  • Oorlogsherinneringskruis 1940-1945 verleend in 1950. (War Remembrance Cross, 1940-1945, awarded in 1950.)
  • Verzetsherdenkingskruis verleend op 5-1-1982. (Resistance Commemorations Cross, granted on 5-1-1982.)

Belgium

  • “Herinneringsmedaille van de oorlog” met twee elkaar kruisende bliksemlichten verleend door ZKH de Prins Regent op 16 februari 1946.  (Remembrance Medallion from the War with two crossed lightning bolts, granted by ZKH the Prince Regent, 16 Feb. 1946.
  • Op 12 februari 1951 Besluit van de Minister van Landsverdediging de Belgische Leeuw te hecten op deze medaille: “wegens uitzonderlijke diensten gedurende de bezetting bewezen in de Inlichtings en Actiediensten.”  (Resolved by the Minister of Land Defense to attach the Belgium Lion; For outstanding service during the occupation regarding the Information and Action Service.
  • Besluit van de Minister van Landsverdediging te Brussel op 28 October 1950 Karst G. Smit to benoemen tot Helper 1e klasse van de Inlichtings en Actiediensten.  (Resolved from the Minister of Land Defense in Brussels, on 28 October1950, to grant to Karst G. Smit the honor of Helper 1st Class of the Information and Action Service.
  • On 12 april 1952 verlening van de Medaille van de Weerstand door de Minister van Landsverdediging.  (On 12 April 1952 he was granted The Medallion of Resistance by the Minister of Land Defense.)
  • Bij Koninklijk Besluit nr. 316 van 27 juli 1954 verlening van het Kruis van de Belgische Politieke Gevangene 1940-1945. Het lint draagt drie sterren.  (By Royal Decree Nr. 316, on 27 July 1954, he was granted the Cross of the Belgium Political Prisoners 1940-1945.  The ribbon carries three stars.
  • Bij Koninklijk Besluit van 19 december 1967 verlening van de Medaille van de Militair Strijder van de Oorlog 1940-1945.  (By Royal Decree on 19 December 1967, granted the Medallion of the Military War Hero During the War Years 1940-1945.

United States of America

  • Eisenhower Certificate in 1946.
  • Medal of Freedom with Silver Palm on 26 August 1946.  (The ceremony was on 21 November 1946.  See above.)
  • Citation of the Air Forces Escape and Evasion Society in June 1985.

Great Britain

  • Air Chief Marshal Tedder Certificate, 1946.
  • Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE), 2 March 1947.

France

  • Het Certificaat ondertekend door generaal de Gaulle, op 20 maart 1951. (Certificate signed by General de Gaulle, on March 20, 1951.)
  • De Medaille d’Argent de la Reconnaissance Francaise pour services rendus à la France op 24 september 1954.  (The Medal d’Argent de la Reconnaissance Francaise for services rendered for France on September 24, 1954.)
  • De Medaille dez Passeurs verleend in 1974.  (The Medallion dez Passeurs granted in 1974.)

Israel

  • De Medaille des Justees – (Yad Vashem) verleend op 5 juni 1978.  Le 4 Octobre 1983 j’ai planté un arbre dans l’Allee des Justes à Yad Vashem — Har Hazikaron — Jerusalem.

In addition to the above, there is a special exhibit in honor of Karst Smit at the Marechaussee Museum in Buren, The Netherlands.

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