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Decorations for Bravery

Cross of Valour

Star of Courage

Medal of Bravery

Would you go into a burning building -- twice -- to save people you didn’t know? Would you jump into an icy river to save a friend? Or walk through pools of gasoline to help a driver trapped in a car after an accident?

A number of Canadians have answered these questions, because they’ve done it. In the face of great danger, they reacted the way we all hope we would react. And in recognition of their actions, they’ve been awarded Decorations for Bravery.

Bravery decorations recognize people who have risked their lives to save or protect others. Three levels — the Cross of Valour, the Star of Courage and the Medal of Bravery — reflect the varying degrees of risk involved in any act of bravery.

The Queen created the Decorations for Bravery in 1972. In the 25 years since then, more than 2,000 people have received Decorations for Bravery. The Governor General personally presents the decorations in ceremonies held at Rideau Hall or La Citadelle.

Anyone can nominate a person they believe deserves recognition for a brave act by completing a nomination form. A brief outline of the incident, the names of the people involved and the place and date of the event are also needed. Nominations must be made within two years of the incident.

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