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Glasgow, UK. 11th October 2018, Glasgow UK. Second World War Medals being presented to veteran's niece after going missing for decades. The Medals of Colonel William I French of the Glasgow highlanders were found in a safe of a Glasgow accountants four years ago, French Duncan. Helen Woods (James Alexander French's grandaughter) presented with the medals. Credit: Colin Fisher/Alamy Live News

Glasgow, UK. 11th October 2018, Glasgow UK. Second World War Medals being presented to veteran's niece after going missing for decades. The Medals of Colonel William I French of the Glasgow highlanders were found in a safe of a Glasgow accountants four years ago, French Duncan.   Helen Woods (James Alexander French's grandaughter) presented with the medals. Credit: Colin Fisher/Alamy Live News Stock Photo
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Image details

Contributor:

Colin Fisher / Alamy Stock Photo

Image ID:

PW183K

File size:

72.3 MB (3.3 MB Compressed download)

Releases:

Model - no | Property - noDo I need a release?

Dimensions:

6160 x 4100 px | 52.2 x 34.7 cm | 20.5 x 13.7 inches | 300dpi

Date taken:

17 September 2018

Location:

French Duncan LLP, Finnieston Street, Glasgow, UK

More information:

This image could have imperfections as it’s either historical or reportage.

The niece of a WWII Glasgow veteran is having her uncle’s medals presented to her after decades of being missing. Colonel William I. French’s medals (a DSO, various campaign medals, and an OBE), which were won while he was a Lieutenant Colonel of the 1st Battalion, The Glasgow Highlanders, were found in the safe of Glasgow accountants French Duncan LLP four years ago when they moved offices and it is only recently that they discovered who his remaining living relative was and invited her to Glasgow to present her uncle’s medals. Colonel French had been a partner for 36 years in accountancy firm French and Cowan (the earlier name of the firm that is now French Duncan) until he died in 1971, unmarried and with no obvious heirs. The medals had been left by the Colonel at the office for safe keeping and after his death remained there unclaimed. Graeme Finnie, managing partner with French Duncan, explained: “When we discovered the medals we were determined to get them to their rightful owner, but this proved to be extremely difficult. We engaged a specialist in tracking down the beneficiaries of wills to find Colonel French’s living heirs and after about six months of research he found his niece Mrs. Helen Woods of Nantwich, Cheshire.” As Mrs Woods said: “I had tried many times over the years to find where the medals had disappeared to. I had contacted the Ministry of Defence and even my Uncle Willie’s old regiment, the Glasgow Highlanders, to see if they had any record of the medals and where they had ended up, but I had no success. And then a few weeks ago I received a call out of the blue to see if I was the Helen Woods who was Lt Col French’s niece. I was delighted to confirm I was. I am so delighted at the kindness of the partners of French Duncan LLP who have gone out of their way to track me down and to return my uncle’s medals.”

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