For every Luke Skywalker there are fifty rebel pilots that lost their lives in a terrifying ball of fire. After all, not everyone has a Han Solo to swoop in and save their asses at the exact right moment. Or a wise old ghost to tell them exactly what to do and exactly when to do it. Let's take some time to pay tribute to the characters that never got their due.
Chewbacca's snub at A New Hope's closing ceremony is easily the biggest "f*ck you" in Star Wars. Denying him a well-deserved medal is bad enough, but leaving him standing on a lower pedestal under the recipients is downright anti-wookie. Princess Leia should have worn a giant "F*CK ALIENS" sash just to go all the way with it. I suspect Chewie's last groan before the credits roughly translates to "Why are you all clapping? They haven't finished handing out medals." Luckily for our pal Chewie, he's enough of a fan favorite that he's in a considerably more enviable position than the other characters on this list.
It only takes one glory-hogging moisture farmer to blow up a Death Star, but it takes many Bothans dying to get him there. Though they gave their lives to obtain the Death Star plans that would lead to its destruction, Bothans are completely absent from the Star Wars movies save for Mon Monthma's one half-assed reference: "Blah, blah, exhaust port, blah blah, some guys died to get this or whatever." Sure, Chewie never got a medal, but the Bothans weren't even invited to the ceremony. Or maybe they're such good spies that we couldn't see them hiding in the human crowd. If that was the case they probably wouldn't be getting killed all the time.
Captain Raymus Antilles refused to give up the Death Star plans even as Darth Vader strangled the life out of him. Of course, his blind devotion to the Rebellion even in the face of death lead to Raymus Antilles becoming a household name...to no one at all. Honestly, Raymus isn't even the second most popular character with the last name Antilles. His claim to fame is being Darth Vader's first on screen kill and having his corpse choke-slammed. I guess the Empire only "sets for stun" when they're dealing with princesses.
Luke couldn't have toppled the Empire without the tutelage of Obi-Wan, a last minute save by Han Solo, or the medical handy work of 2-1B. In case you didn't pick up on my awful pun, 2-1B is the medical droid that repaired Luke's severed hand at the end of Empire. Sorry, did I say "repaired?" I mean he built him a new one so flawless that Luke used it to defeat the most powerful Sith Lord in a lightsaber duel. Meanwhile, C-3PO can talk to moisture vaporators.