Lieutenant-Colonel George Hewetson

 

Unit : Battalion Headquarters, 8th Parachute Battalion

Army No. : 74257

Awards : Distinguished Service Order

 

On 24th March 1945 East of the Rhine, 8th Parachute Battalion commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Hewetson had the difficult task of securing the Brigade dropping zone, to protect the arrival of the remaining parachute troops and gliders.

 

This officer established his headquarters in a wood commanding the dropping zone. The whole area was under continuous and very heavy shelling and mortar fire. Lieutenant-Colonel Hewetson, however showed the most resolute refusal to be deterred from his task. With utter disregard for his own safety, he walked freely about the dropping zone, encouraging his own men in the winkling out of a number of enemy strongpoints, and directing the men of other units to their appointed rendezvous.

 

During this period, a glider crashed on his command post, killing the officer beside him, and wounding others. Lieutenant-Colonel Hewetson was himself very badly shaken, but he flatly refused medical aid until not only the securing of the dropping zone but also the capture of his Battalion's next objective had been completed.

 

He [? ?] and as taken to the Main Dressing Station. After a short rest he overrode all protests and insisted on returning to his battalion. He arrived in time to undertake the capture of the important village of Lembeck. Opposition here was provided by a Panzer Grenadier Training Unit, and was bitter. Lieutenant-Colonel Hewetson himself led his battalions attack, which he pressed home with such irresistible vigour that the objective was taken with very heavy enemy losses in killed and prisoners.

 

Throughout the whole of this action Lieutenant-Colonel Hewetson's superb gallantry and leadership inspired his whole Battalion.

 

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