HERBERT, Roy George

3 Commando
Northamptonshire Regiment
3384201 & 287391
Died : 
Thursday, June 8, 1944
Killed in action or died of wounds
Lieutenant Roy George Herbert DCM, MM, died during operations in Normandy. [1]
  • 1940 (Private) awarded the Military Medal for his gallantry whilst serving with 5th Northants at Oudenarde. [2]
His citation reads "On the night of 21st May two sections "A" Company were ordered forward to assist "D" Company. Pte. Herbert was in one of the sections. On arrival he was told that 2nd Lt. Pemberton was lying out in front of the post near the canal. He went to the officer's assistance and found him to be seriously wounded. He attended to the officer and dragged him to the shelter of a nearby house.  He then returned and fetched the stretcher bearers from "A" Company and assisted them to get the officer to the regimental aid post. All this time the post was being heavily shelled and machine gunned." 
Roy George Herbert, a Monmouthshire man, was educated at Blaina Central School, and his home was at Largs, Scotland [3]. After volunteering for, and joining, No 3 Commando he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his gallantry during the raid at Vaagso. He held the rank of Lance Sergeant at this time. Part of the citation for this award reads  "Throughout the operation he showed great determination, initiative,organising ability, and powers of leadership. His personal gallantry and drive set an inspiring example to those under him." [4]
He was later selected for officer training and sent to OCTU.  He received his commission on the 21st July 1943 and then rejoined No 3 Commando in Italy. [5]
On their return to the UK he was reluctantly attached to the staff at the CBTC, Achnacarry, along with fellow No 3 Commando Officer's  Maj. John Pooley and Maj. Brian Butler.
Brigadier Durnford-Slater who issued the direct order later stated " I was determined that those Commandos who had in previous operations taken the most consistent risks, should be placed in safer employment." However after continuous pleas to be allowed to rejoin the Commando, he agreed and all 3 returned. The three officers were among the many Commandos who were later killed during the Normandy landings. [6] 
[1] CWGC
[2] LG Publication date: 18 October 1940; Supplement: 34975; Page: 6116 & National Archives WO 373/16/247
[3] Article in the Western Mail - Monday 08 June 1942.
[3]  British Newspaper Archive (website britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk); The British Library Board.
[4]  LG Publication date: 31 March 1942; Supplement: 35510; Page: 1506  & National Archives WO 373/93/258
[5] OCTU - LG Publication date: 12 November 1943; Supplement: 36247; Page: 5018
[6] Commando - Memoirs of a Fighting Commando in WW2 author Brig John Durnford-Slater.
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