A total of 145 members of the Armed Forces have received honours and awards in the Operational Honours List dated today, 11 September 2009.
Amongst the awards is a Military Cross given to Medical Assistant Class 1 Kate Louise Nesbitt, RN, for service in Afghanistan - the first MC awarded to a woman in the Royal Navy and only the second MC awarded to any woman. ZUI this article from The Times:
A 20-year-old medic who repeatedly rushed forward to save colleagues while under attack from the Taleban has become the first woman in the Royal Navy to be awarded the Military Cross and only the second in the Armed Forces.
Able Seaman Class 1 Kate Nesbitt tended wounded colleagues from 3 Commando Brigade Royal Marines several times when they came under fire while on patrol in Afghanistan. The Ministry of Defence said: “Able Seaman Nesbitt’s actions throughout a series of offensive operations were exemplary. Under fire and under pressure her commitment and courage were inspirational and made the difference between life and death. She performed in the highest traditions of her service.”
The Military Cross is given to members of the Armed Forces “for exemplary gallantry during active operations against the enemy”, and ranks below only the Victoria Cross and Conspicuous Gallantry Cross as a recognition of bravery in battle.
Private Michelle Norris, 18, a medic with the Royal Army Medical Corps, was the first woman to win the Military Cross. She braved heavy sniper and machinegun fire from 200 insurgents during a fierce battle in southern Iraq in 2006. She climbed on top of an armoured vehicle to give life-saving treatment to a comrade.
This article from The Telegraph includes brief descriptions of some of the awards, as does this one from the BBC.