Spink Auctions: One Man, One Hand, and a Hell of a Medal Group

Spink USA are pleased to announce the auctioning of a rare distinguished service order medal group. It is a testament to one man’s hard work and determination to serve his country even in the face of injury, hardship and terror on the high seas.

Captain Gervase William Heaton’s D.S.O. and Bar, O.B.E. Group of Ten was earned across both World Wars. The first award bar was scored in 1916 ‘in recognition of bravery and devotion to duty during mine-sweeping and mine-laying operations.’ The second award bar was won in 1918, for ‘Mine Recovery’ and was also awarded the 1940 Military Division O.B.E. Group of Ten. With only 37 D.S.O.’s with second award bars awarded to the Royal Navy during the Great War, Captain Heaton’s combination can be considered very scarce.

Captain Heaton was appointed Acting Commander “…in charge of a Flotilla of Minesweepers…”, but his one hand is not to be thought of as a warning against the dangers of mines exploding at sea, he lost it during a ‘motor smash’ incident in 1914. However, his dramatic accident led to no reduction in action and services rendered. Throughout the war he served “…in command of two minesweepers, and later a division” being awarded a D.S.O. in the 1916 New Year’s Honours, a Mention in Dispatches in January 1917, a French Croix de Guerre in November 1917 and the Second Award Bar in the Birthday Honours List of 1918.

Heaton Medals and Service Awards. Images courtesy Spink USA

Captain Gervase William Heaton Medal and Service Award Set. Image courtesy Spink USA

The Group is estimated at US$5,000-$7,000.

The Numismatic Collector’s Series auction takes place on October 19-20 at Spink USA’s offices in Manhattan, New York.

For more information, please contact Marcus Budgen at +44 (0)20 7563 4059 ([email protected]) or Charles Blane at (646) 509-1355 ([email protected]).

SPINK USA | 145 W. 57th Street | New York | NY 10009

About Spink

Spink is the world’s leading auctioneer of stamps, coins, banknotes, medals, bonds & shares, autographs, books and wine. Since its foundation in 1666, the Spink name has become synonymous with tradition, experience and integrity. Holder of royal warrants and numerous records for prices achieved at auction, Spink offers an unparalleled range of services to collectors worldwide. Headquartered in London, with offices in New York, Hong Kong, Singapore and Switzerland, Spink holds over 70 auctions a year. Catalogues can be accessed through the Spink website (www.spink.com) or via the Spink App for iPhone and iPad.

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