BROWN, Robert Hall

Rank: 
Lance Sergeant
Unit/Base: 
Regiment/Corps: 
Gordon Highlanders
Service: 
Army
Service number: 
2879761
Honours & Awards: 
Lance Sergeant Robert Brown, No 2 Commando, was awarded the MM [1] in recognition of gallant and distinguished services in the field. He was one of the Commando contingent that took part in operations from HMS Triumph against the Palermo and Messina railway on the 29/30 August 1941. His party could not be re-embarked and were subsequently captured. He was eventually imprisoned at Stalag 344 Lamsdorf. [2]
 

Citation

Brown was embarked in HM Submarine Triumph for a commando raid against the main Messina - Palermo railway. Triumph first attacked the Italian battle fleet North of Messina, torpeding the cruiser Bolzano; this was immediately followed by heavy and accurate depth charge counter attack. The submarine withdrew to carry out the Commando raid, but on approaching the shore, encountered a fishing vessel in mist and sank it, having again to withdraw as the gunfire had compromised the position. The next evening, 29th August 1941, Triumph approached and launched the raiding party in canoes. At 0320 / 30th August, one and a half spans of the bridge were successfully demolished, but the Commando party could not be re-embarked and were taken prisoner. Brown showed great courage, determination and resource throughout this eventful and disturbing submarine passage, and throughout the successful raid. [3]
 
Recommended for award by Captain George Walter Gillow Simpson, RN.
Captain (S) 10th Submarine Flotilla Malta.
 
Sources
[1] London Gazettes Supp. 37528, page 1835.
[2] National Archives WO 392/1 - 'Germany & German Occupied Territories, Imperial Prisoners of War; Section 1 - British Army. September 1944.
[3] National Archives WO 373/101 (copy of completed W.A. Form 6)
 
Notes
Regiment shown as London Scottish on NA file and recommendation, Gordon Highlanders in LG.
 

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