WHITEHEAD, Andrew Francis
Unit / Base:
'45 Commando RM'
Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Whitehead, commanding 45 Commando Royal Marines, was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for his actions during operations on the Falkland Islands. He also recieved a Mention in Despatches during operations in Northern Ireland.
Citation for DSOFrom the start of Operation SUTTON he showed himself to be a fine Commanding Officer. His meticulous planning and high standard of leadership was demonstrated on the long approach march from Port San Carlos to the Mount Kent positions overlooking Port Stanley. His Commando marched every foot of the way. Despite the extremely unpleasant weather conditions both on the approach march and during the time spent in defensive positions on Mount Kent his Commando's morale and fitness to fight was of the highest order. Their aggressive and effective patrolling contributed to a marked degree to the success of the ensuing Brigades night attack. During the night battle for the Two Sisters feature, which was his Commando's objective, his cool conduct of the battle resulted in the complete success of his part in the operation. Although while in the Forming Up Point his Commando was caught by enemy defensive fire tasks from 105 and ISSmm guns, he calmly gave the correct orders to get the attack underway. Undeterred by heavy machine gun fire which caught two of his companies during the final assault up the steep slopes of the mountain, he fought his Commando through and on to their objective. His calm voice on the radio was a tonic to all who heard it. During the following 48 hours after securing their objective the Commando was subjected to harassing fire from 105 and 155mm guns. Their steadiness under the fire is a tribute to the leadership and calmness of their Commanding Officer. Sources DSO: London Gazette 49134, page 12834. MiD: London Gazette 48922,page 3639