On 3 May 2018, French General Beauchesne, the National President of the French Association of the “Anciens Combattants” Living Abroad – “FACS*” (equivalent of Australian Returned Service League – RSL) came to Melbourne accompanied by Ms. Marie Gittard the president of UFE of New South Wales. The purpose of his visit was to give the Medal of Honour of the FACS to the President of the Victorian branch of the Anciens Combattants, Mr Claude Midon.
This medal rewards Mr Midon for his outstanding services and his long contribution to the Victorian branch of the Association. Under Claude Midon’s leadership, the relationship between the FACS and the RSL and the Shrine of Remembrance have grown from strength to strength.
After the ceremony held at the Honorary French Consulate in presence of the committee of the Anciens Combattants, General Beauchesne visited the Shrine of Remembrance where he was greeted by Dr Rob Webster, President of Victorian RSL and Mr Dean Lee, CEO of the Shrine. The General was very impressed by the galleries of the Shrine and could have spent there the rest of the day!
Then, the Conseiller Consulaire, Ms Daniele Kemp, had organised a convivial lunch at French restaurant “Philippe” which brought a delicious conclusion to a wonderful visit.
* FACS HISTORY:
After the Declaration of War in 1914, French people living abroad voluntarily came back to France to fight for their Motherland. When the peace was restaured, an inverse movement took place, thus creating numerous associations of War Veterans abroad. On January 5th 1927, FACS was created as federation of all these associations.
FACS is established in 35 countries across all five continents and aims to create a strong link between members living abroad and France. FACS is an association which welcomes Veterans of all the conflicts.