Why diamond merchant Albert Tankel was awarded a prestigious medal by his Majesty The King of Belgium
In 2004 the King of Belgium conferred the Special Medal of the Professional Associations on the late Albert Tankel, who passed away in May 2016. The award of the medal was in recognition of the diamond business he had conducted with Belgium over many years.
The Queen of the UK had to give her permission to allow the Belgium King to award this medal to Albert, who was a British citizen. Buckingham Palace wrote to Albert in July 2004 to indicate that the 'Queen was pleased to grant Unrestricted Permission to wear the Special Medal of the Professional Associations which was conferred upon you by His Majesty The King of Belgium'
Albert travelled to Antwerp to receive his medal in 2004 with his son Tony.
Albert kept the medal in a safe in his office and other than family and colleagues he never told anyone about it. Although this was a great honour and confirmed the respect with which he was renowned for within the diamond business, Albert never looked for or needed public recognition of his efforts and earlier in his working career (1977 & 1978) he also received the 'Israel Trade Award' in recognition of an 'outstanding contribution in the forging of international trade links'.
Albert Tankel (1934 - 2016)