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Medal Group – Air Vice-Marshal Sir Leonard Monk Isitt

Medal Group – Air Vice-Marshal Sir Leonard Monk Isitt

Medal group awarded to Air Vice-Marshal Sir Leonard Monk Isitt, of Christchurch. Left to right (lower): 1914-15 Star, British War Medal 1914-20, Victory Medal, 1939-45 Star, Pacific Star, Defence Medal, War Medal 1939-45,  NZ War Service Medal, Silver Jubilee Medal 1935, Coronation Medal 1937, Coronation Medal 1953, New Zealand Long and Efficient Service Medal.  Left to right (upper): Legion of Merit – Commander (US), Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE) breast star, Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) neck order.

Isitt served in the territorial forces with the 1st Canterbury Regiment from June 1911 through to April 1915, when he joined the New Zealand Rifle Brigade.  He embarked with the NZEF and served in Egypt and on the Western Front.  He was wounded on the Somme in 1916 and subsequently transferred to the Royal Flying Corps in March 1917.  He returned to New Zealand after the War and in November 1919 became one of the founding officers of the fledgling New Zealand Air Force (NZAF), the precursor to the RNZAF.  Isitt continued his service with the NZAF/RNZAF throughout the inter-war period and Second World War, eventually rising to the rank of Air Vice-Marshal and becoming the first New Zealand-born Chief of Air Staff, from July 1943 until his retirement in May 1946.

Read more about Sir Leonard Isitt on Te Ara,

Date on item: 
1914

Author: CCL Contributor