WO1 Regimental Sergeant Major
4 Independent Company
Liverpool Scottish Queens Own Cameron Highlanders
Honours & Awards:
Sunday, March 29, 1942
Killed in action or died of wounds
Local Roll of Honour:
Regimental Sergeant Major Alan Moss, HQ 2 Commando, was shot and killed during Operation Chariot, the raid at St. Nazaire. Embarking on Motor Launch ML 267 he later received a posthumous Mention in Despatches.
"During the Commando raid on St Nazaire on 28th March 1942 the motor launch in which RSM Moss was travelling was set on fire by enemy shore guns. The troops on board, many of whom were badly wounded, were forced to abandon ship.
Whilst RSM Moss was sitting on and propelling a Carley float, upon which there were already several wounded men, he sighted another wounded soldier in the water who was in danger of drowning *.
RSM Moss left the float, dragged the wounded soldier from the water and gave him his own place on the float. Thereupon he proceeded to tow the float along by swimming in front of it, in a determined effort to bring his wounded comrades to safety.
It was whilst performing this gallant and self sacrificing action that RSM Moss gave his own life, that the lives of others may be saved."
Alan Moss first served in the Liverpool Scots Q.O.C.H. TA, then as a Sergeant in No.4 Independent Company, before becoming the first R.S.M. of No.2 Commando when it was formed. Eight of the eleven Commandos on ML267 died, including RSM Moss and the young Private Diamond he had rescued from the water.
London Gazette 37162, page 3494.
National Archives file WO373/46/297.
Storming St Nazaire, author James Dorrian.
* This was Pte. Thomas Diamond. See Linked Content below.
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