Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Honored Allies Wednesday: Jack A. French (Australia)

John Alexander "Jack" French
"At Milne Bay New Guinea, on the afternoon of 4 September 1942, a company of Australian Infantry battalion attacked a Japanese position where it encountered terrific rifle and machine-gun fire.  The advance of the section, of which Corporal French was in command, was held up by fire from three enemy machine-gun posts, whereupon Corporal French, ordering his section to take cover, advanced and silenced one of the posts with grenades.  He returned to his section for more grenades and again advanced and silenced the second post.  Armed with a Thompson sub-machine gun, he then attacked the third post, firing from the hip as he went forward.  He was seen to be badly wounded by fire from this post, but he continued to advance.  Enemy guns then ceased fire and his section pushed on to find that all the members of the three enemy gun crews had been killed, and that Corporal French had died in front of the third gun pit.  By his cool courage and disregard of his own personal safety, this non-commissioned officer saved members of his section from heavy casualties and was responsible for the successful conclusion of the attack."

From Cpl. French's Victoria Cross citation, awarded on August 29, 1942.
May you be at peace,
Brian & Melonie
John French V.C. Memorial Library in Crows Nest, NSW
John French VC Bridge

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