Dickin Medal Recipient. Paddy, a carrier pigeon, was bred at the Moyleen Lofts in County Antrim, Ireland. He was offered for military service during the Second World War by his owners and was designated NPS.43.9451. During his military training he was based at Ballykinlar Army camp in County Down, and was taken out in the Irish Sea by submarine and set free to find his way back to base. When he was moved to the south coast of England, it took Paddy just three weeks to learn where his new base loft was. He was one of thousands of pigeons taken to France as part of the Operation Overloard, and was one of 30 assigned to US 1st Army who landed at Omaha and Utah Beaches. At 8.15am on June 12, 1944, he was released carrying coded information on the Allied advance. He returned to his loft in Hampshire 230 miles away in four hours 50 minutes, the fastest time of any courier pigeon released during the D-Day landings. Paddy was reportedly the last pigeon to be sent aloft by the US 1st Army in Normandy but he was the first one home. He was awarded the PDSA Dickin Medal, popularly known as the animals VC, on September 1, 1944; the citation on his medal read: "For the best recorded time with a message from the Normandy Operations, while serving with the RAF in June, 1944." After the war he returned home to County Antrim with owner, where he died at the age of 11. His story was told in a children's book 'Paddy the Pigeon' by Gail Seekamp in 2003. Paddy's Dickin Medal was sold at auction to a pigeon fancier for almost £7,000 in September 1999.
Specifically: Memorial dedicated at the harbor in Carnlough, Ireland
Created by: Iola
Record added: Jan 30, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 104417266
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