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Ian De Stains has a place in a decades-old British order of chivalry created by King George V in 1917. Yet after knowing him, this may be hard to believe.

De Stains forwent a trip to Buckingham Palace in 1993 to accept his title as Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) and meet the Queen of England. Since the honor was for his volunteer work in the Tokyo community, he opted to have it here in Japan. De Stains explains: “Because it was for the community, I wanted to have the ceremony here so members of the community could take part.”

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