Former switchboard operator at D-Day headquarters awarded Legion d’honneur at age 92

Marie Scott was 17 years old when she listened to and collated messages for Operation Overlord

Chiara Giordano
Sunday 07 April 2019 22:14
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Marie Scott, a former switchboard operator at the communications headquarters for the D-Day landings, is being awarded the Legion d'honneur.
Marie Scott, a former switchboard operator at the communications headquarters for the D-Day landings, is being awarded the Legion d'honneur.

A former teenage switchboard operator at the communications headquarters for the D-Day landings is being awarded the highest French decoration.

Marie Scott was 17 years old when she was involved in listening to and collating messages for Operation Overlord at Fort Southwick, Portsmouth, during the Second World War.

Now the 92-year-old from New Malden, south-west London, is being presented with the Legion d’honneur for her role in the invasion to liberate Western Europe from the Nazis.

As part of the 75th anniversary of D-Day this summer, Ms Scott will travel to Normandy with a group of 30 other Second World War veterans.

She will be officially presented with the award by a French general at the Memorial Pegasus Museum in Normandy on 5 June.

Marie Scott, a former switchboard operator at the communications headquarters for the D-Day landings, is being awarded the Legion d'honneur.

She said: “I am truly overwhelmed to receive the Legion of Honour for the part we played in the D-Day landings.

“Very few women have received this medal and it is a true honour.

“Being officially presented with the medal at the Pegasus Museum on 5 June surrounded by a group of Second World War veterans will be a very moving experience.”

Ms Scott will travel with the Taxi Charity for Military Veterans, which was formed in Fulham in 1948 and arranges trips for veterans from all conflicts.

A spokeswoman for the charity said: “Working on the switchboard in Fort Southwick, Marie would pass messages from the continent to the leaders of Operation Overlord, General Eisenhower and Field Marshall Montgomery.

“One of her most vivid memories is that when the beaches transmitted she could hear the gunfire.”

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