CSM William James McCutcheon


Unit : "C" Company, 1st Battalion The Royal Ulster Rifles

Service No. : 7012822

Awards : Military Medal


For gallantry, devotion to duty and conspicuous bravery in the field. Near Cabourg on 18th August 1944, the Reconnaissance Platoon while leading the Battalion, came under heavy fire from Machine Guns, mortars and rifles. It suffered casualties and with minefields on both its flanks was in a very difficult position. The Reconnaissance Platoon Commander called for assistance and CSM McCutcheon went forward with stretcher bearers. Two hours ensued during which time the stretcher bearers slowly dragged the wounded into what cover there was, immediate covering fire being provided together with 2" and 3" mortar smoke from "C" Company. The whole operation was organised by Captain Martin, the Reconnaissance Platoon Commander, who was frequently absent organising further smoke and covering fire. During these absences CSM McCutcheon took over command and assisted in the carriage of stretchers. He also repulsed an attack, on the Platoon flank, by a German patrol. Throughout the operation he showed a complete disregard for his own personal safety, his coolness and tenacity made a difficult operation possible, and he finally came out himself carrying a stretcher with the Platoon Commander, crossing a minefield in the process. Over the whole period his bravery, as always with this Warrant Officer, was absolute, and he was an inspiration to all, officers and men alike.


CSM McCutcheon was killed on the 24th March 1945, during the Rhine Crossing.


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