Sergeant Owen George Hughes


Unit : No.11 Platoon, "B" Company, 10th Parachute Battalion

Army No. : 6344345

Awards : Bronzen Kruis


On the 20th September 1944 Sergeant Hughes was one of 70 other ranks who with 7 officers, after heavy fighting since they landed, constituted the remnants of 10th Parachute Battalion.


The Battalion was ordered to take up a position at the Cross Roads at Osterbeck. On the way there, they were constantly sniped, suffering casualties in officers and other ranks. The Germans were pushed back and the Battalion took up positions in a group of houses.


During the next few days, fighting was bitter and intense in its severity with the Germans using Tanks, Self-Propelled guns, mortars, machine guns and snipers. The Battalion's casualties mounted; finally the side of Sergeant Hughes' house was blown in and Sergeant Hughes was covered by a large pile of debris. He was dug out and although badly shaken, was undeterred and continued with his job of leading and encouraging the men - sniping and forcing back the Germans who had closed in and were trying to overwhelm the position by throwing Stick Grenades in the windows.


With the over-running of Battalion Headquarters, Sergeant Hughes found himself in charge of the remnants of the Battalion and when ordered to do so, withdrew his men into the Divisional Box area.


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