Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Honored Allies Wednesday: Arthur S. Gurney (Australia)

"For gallant and unselfish bravery in silencing enemy machine-gun posts by bayonet assault at Tell El Eisa on 22 July 1942, thus allowing his Company to continue the advance.  During an attack on strong German positions in the early morning of 22 July 1942, the Company to which Private Gurney belonged was held up by intense machine-gun fire from posts less than 100 yards ahead, heavy casualties being inflicted on our troops, all the officers being killed or wounded.  Grasping the seriousness of the situation and without hesitation, Private Gurney charged the nearest enemy machine-gun post, bayoneted three men and silenced the post.  He then continued on to a second post, bayoneted two men and sent out a third as a prisoner.  At his stage a stick grenade was thrown at Private Gurney which knocked him to the ground.  He rose again, picked up his rifle and charged a third post using the bayonet with great vigor.  He then disappeared from view, and later his body was found in an enemy post.  By this single-handed act of gallantry in the face of a determined enemy, Private Gurney enabled his Company to press forward to its objective, inflicting heavy losses upon the enemy.  The successful outcome of this engagement was almost entirely due to Private Gurney's heroism at the moment when it was needed."

From Pvt. Gurney's Victoria Cross citation, awarded on September 8, 1942.
May you be at peace,
Brian & Melonie
Gurney Memorial in Australia.

Gurney's tale from The Argus.

A ward is dedicated to him at the old Repatriation General Hospital now known as the Hollywood Private Hospital located in Nedlands, Western Australia.

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