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Legion of Honor awarded to two veterans at the French Embassy

Legion of Honor awarded to two veterans at the French Embassy

Published on February 24, 2015

On February 10, three military officials were decorated with France’s highest national orders at the Embassy of France’s Maison Française for their outstanding service. Major General William C. Mayville Jr. and Mr. James McCarthy were conferred with the Legion of Honor, while Lieutenant General Michael D. Barbero was awarded the National Order of Merit. Major General Delort-Laval, the Director of International Relations at the French Army Joint Staff in Paris, spoke at the ceremony.

Major General William Mayville, recipient of the Legion of Honor.


Major General William Mayville, a recipient of the Legion of Honor, graduated from the U.S. Military Academy of West Point in 1982, and continued to serve in a number of leadership positions, including Chief of Operations and Chief of Plans on the Staff of the U.S. Commander, Europe. When serving as Commander of the East Region of NATO forces in Afghanistan, he oversaw the French task Force Lafayette within his assigned units—General Delort-Laval praised his leadership, saying, " the French Task Force, under your command, deeply felt the comradeship and solidarity of its American allies within the East Region under your exceptional leadership."

Major General Delort-Laval (left) congratulates Legion of Honor recipient James F. McCarthy (center) and National Order of Merit recipient Lieutenant General Michael Barbero (right).


James F. McCarthy, another recipient of the Legion of Honor, has served in the U.S. Navy for 28 years, and is currently Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff for Capabilities and Resources. In speaking of the positive relationship which Mr. McCarthy maintains with the French Department of Defense, General Delfort-Laval said that he has "never ceased to strongly support the needs of the French Forces and the development of several bilateral projects between our two Navies."

Lieutenant General Michael Barbero, a 1976 graduate of the Military Academy of West Point, commanded the Multinational Transitional Security Command and the NATO Training Command for 46 months in Iraq, and later as Chief of the Joint Improvised Explosive Devices Defeat Organization. General Delort-Laval contributed France’s success in Afghanistan to General Barbero’s excellent leadership skills, saying that he "was instrumental in the successes we achieved together, side by side, particularly in Afghanistan."

Olivier Serot-Alméras, Consul General of France in Washington, was present to honor the recipients, as was General Vincent Cousin, Defense Attaché at the French Embassy.

Click here to see more pictures of the ceremony.

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