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This item is part of A Gentleman's Collection; A Comprehensive Selection of 20th Century American Gallantry & Casualty Awards. Click Here to view all items in this collection.

eMedals-United States. A Silver Star & Purple Heart to Pte Arthur T. Blaquiere, KIA in Luzon, Philippines, 1945

Item: AZ050

United States. A Silver Star & Purple Heart to Pte Arthur T. Blaquiere, KIA in Luzon, Philippines, 1945

$1,400

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United States. A Silver Star & Purple Heart to Pte Arthur T. Blaquiere, KIA in Luzon, Philippines, 1945

Silver Star, bronze gilt, silvered star centre, 34mm (w) x 35.7mm (h), numbered “100398” on edge and engraved “ARTHUR T. BLAQUIERE” on reverse, on period ribbon and brooch, extremely fine condition. Accompanied by its 35mm (w) x 10mm (h) Ribbon Bar and 17mm (w) x 3mm (h) Enamelled Ribbon Bar, in its hardshelled case of issue, 88mm (w) x 166mm (l) x 26mm (h), stamped “SILVER STAR / MEDAL” case extremely fine; Purple Heart, two-piece construction, bronze gilt with purple, red, white and green enamels, 34.5mm (w) x 43mm (h- inclusive of integral suspension ball), reverse machine engraved “ARTHUR T. BLAQUIERE”, intact enamels, light contact, extremely fine condition. Accompanied by its 36mm (w) x 10mm (h) Ribbon Bar and its 17mm (w) x 3mm (h) Enameled Ribbon Bar, in its hardshelled case of issue, 88mm (w) x 166mm (l) x 26mm (h), stamped “PURPLE HEART”, lightly scuffed on the lid, case extremely fine.

 

Accompanied by extensive photocopies from national archives, including newspaper articles, documents, and correspondence regarding the shipment of Blaquiere’s physical remains. Several articles refer to George Smart’s service.

 

Footnote: Arthur Tom ‘Tommy’ Blaquiere was born on December 18, 1920 in Norway, Main to Alice and Arsene Blaquiere. He was an active community band member and was employed as a bugler for Company C before working as a radio technician. He and his cousin, George Smart, enlisted on February 24, 1941 for Company C, 103rd Infantry National Guard. Prior to being shipped off, Blaquiere married Beatrice Ludwig, a radio instructor in Florida on June 14, 1941.

 

On January 27, 1945, Blaquiere was killed in action in Luzon while relaying messages from the forward observer to the gun positions during enemy fire. He received a Silver Star for his brave actions, for which the citation read, “For gallantry in action, against the enemy in the vicinity of Posorrublic, Luzon, Philippine Islands, on 9 and 27 January 1945. Private Blaquiere was a radio operator on a landing craft which landed at Lingayen Gulf in the first wave. When the landing craft was hit by enemy anti-tank fire, disabling the vehicle and seriously wounding two members of the crew, Private Blaquiere fearlessly remained at his radio post and with utter disregard for his own safety assisted the driver by giving directions in moving the vehicle to a sheltered position. Later hostile shell fire was disrupting wire communications between the forward observer and the gun positions. On his own initiative, Private Blaquiere moved well forward with a radio and relayed the fire commands from the forward observer to the gun positions, although he was constantly exposed to enemy artillery shelling and Private Blaquiere was instantly killed. By his aggressiveness, courage in the face of hostile fire, and deep devotion to duty, Private Blaquiere assisted immeasurably to the successful completion of his organization assigned missions and won the respect and admiration of his comrades.”

 

At the time of his death, Blaquiere was in possession of a watch strap which was noted to be “stained in blood.” His black wallet, pocket knife, and ruby ring were located among his belongings and returned to his wife. Blaquiere was the fourteenth soldier from Norway that was killed in the war. He was originally interred at ARGS Mausoleum in Manila. In June, 1948, his remains were shipped to the United States by the request of his widow, and formal committal services were held in his honor.

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