I have been honoured with the Grosses Verdienstkreuz in Silber from the Freundeskreis Hoch- und Deutschmeister, Mannheim/Baden, Germany. The Freundeskreis Hoch- und Deutschmeister commemorates the military tradition of the Deutschmeistern, who were established as a regiment by treaty of the Emperor Leopold I and the Grand Master of the Teutonic Order in 1696. Thereafter the military tradition of the Hoch- und Deutschmeistern is distinguished by numerous battle honours.
From the end of the nineteenth-century, former members of the regiment and related organizations formed a German confederation of associations under the protection of the Grand Master of the Teutonic Order. From 1986, this umbrella organization has been headquartered in Vienna. It includes German members, belonging to the federal government, who meet on St George’s Day each year at Bad Mergentheim. Since 1993, the Freundeskreis Hoch- und Deutschmeister Mannheim/Baden has been among their number, becoming a member of the central Vienna organization from 2010 onwards.