Private Albert Edward Etheridge
Unit : "B" Company, 10th Parachute Battalion
Army No. : 6913223
Awards : Distinguished Conduct Medal
On 18th September 1944 when the 4th Brigade dropped at Arnhem they found that the Germans were covering considerable portions of the DZ with Machine Gun and Mortar fire. 10th Battalion found that the Germans were actually occupying the Battalion R.V. and OC "B" Company was ordered to attack and secure it.
Private Etheridge, "B" Company, had dropped the day before with the Advance Party and, realising that the R.V. was held, had made a recce of it. He was thus able to give his Company Commander an accurate and valuable picture of this situation when he arrived.
During the attack Private Etheridge noticed an enemy Machine Gun post which was causing considerable trouble to the Company from a flank.
He decided to attack it himself and despite the concentrated fire his movements caused he advanced rapidly and without regard to his personal safety to close quarters, where he destroyed the gun and its crew with Grenades. His prompt action undoubtedly saved the Company many casualties.
On Tuesday 19th September the Battalion was dug-in in a defensive position in a wood on the South side of the Arnhem-Renkum road just North of Wolfhezen. The Battalion was under continual heavy fire from Self-Propelled guns, Flak guns in a ground role, Mortars and Machine Guns.
In addition snipers, taking advantage of the dense undergrowth and woods, were extremely active and were causing numerous casualties.
Private Etheridge volunteered to go out alone to deal with these snipers. For approximately 3 hours this soldier disregarded any thoughts of personal danger sought out and silenced 4 enemy snipers.
Throughout these days and later on in the Divisional perimeter Private Etheridge gave an outstandingly high performance. His personal courage, his unselfishness and grim determination was an inspiration to all.
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