Francis A. Duffy was born in Burlington New Jersey on November 29, 1894. He died in the same town October, 1975. His military career started April 1, 1918. He was discharged after the end of World War 1 on June 6, 1919. At discharge, he was listed as PFC.
This group of two Distinguished Service Crosses has an unusual history. In fact, Duffy had as many as 4 DSC's. This group includes WW1 DSC Number 4719 with solid brooch and a later un-numbered Robbins contract DSC with slot brooch. Both DSC's are engraved on the reverse "Francis A. Duffy". The engraving on the two DSC's is similar. The concensus is that the numbered DSC may have been purchased by Duffy, and the Robbins medal was an officially engraved government issued replacement.
According to Al Gleim's records, Francis A. Duffy was awarded DSC number 1191 and number 7269. The second was an official replacement after the first was reported stolen. At this time, the whereabouts of number 1191 is unknown. Number 7269 is reported to have been in the possession of Gary Hullfish as of 2006.
Duffy was awarded the DSC by General Order 20 dated January, 1919. The award reads as follows: "For extraordinary heroism in action Thiaucourt and Grandpre, France, September 21 and October 16, 1918. On September 21, at Thaiucourt, France, he remained in the front line trenches under heavy artillery and machine-gun fire, caring for the wounded and displaying utter disregard for personal danger while administering first-aid treatment for 40 men. During the advance of his company from St. Juvin to Grandpre he followed immediately behind the first wave, under heavy machine-gun and shell fire, caring for the wouhded as they fell"
This group includes the two DSC's, a desk nameplate "Major Francis A. Duffy F.D."(indicating he had later military service), an original copy of General Order #20, an original of the booklet "74th Annual Reunion of the Legion of Valor", a photocopy of Duffy in uniform wearing the DSC, a 1946 pano photo from a 78th Division that depicts Duffy and his sister, and copies of his Discharge and Enlistment Record.