WWII 65th Anniversary of Victory in Europe Commemorative Medal
The surrender of the German forces in northwestern Europe was signed on May 4, 1945. A second document, covering all the German forces, was signed with more ceremony at the headquarters of the commanding general of the victorious forces in Europe, Dwight Eisenhower. It took place at Reims in the presence of Soviet, United States, British, and French delegations. At midnight on May 8, 1945, the war in Europe was officially over. News of the surrender broke in the West on May 8, and celebrations erupted throughout Europe. In the U.S., Americans awoke to the news and declared May 8 V-E Day.
The Battle of Berlin, designated the Berlin Strategic Offensive Operation by the Soviet Union, was the final major offensive of the European Theatre of World War II. It lasted from April 20, 1945 until the morning of May 2, 1945, and was one of the bloodiest battles in history. The German defenses consisted of several depleted, badly equipped, and disorganized Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS divisions, as well as many Volkssturm and Hitler Youth members. Within the next days, the Soviets were rapidly advancing through the city to the center, and after fierce fighting, conquering the Reichstag on April 30, 1945. Before the battle was over, German Fuehrer Adolf Hitler and a number of his followers committed suicide. The city's defenders finally surrendered on May 2, 1945.
This Medal‘s design incorporates the flags of the four countries - USA, Great Britain, France and the Soviet Union - that were present at the signing of the surrender at Reims. In the center of the medal is Berlin, where the defeat of the Germans and the death of their leader signaled the end of the war. In the ribbon, the black signifies the defeat of the enemy, the white signifies the surrender, and the red shows the courage of the Allied forces.