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Headquarters: a brief outline of the activities of headquarters of the third division and the 8th and 14th Brigades during their service in the Pacific

III — Decorations and Awards

Decorations and Awards

For services in the Pacific while serving with 8th Brigade Headquarters British and American decorations and awards were made to personnel as follows:—

Bar to DSO.—Brigadier R. A. Row.

The citation reads:—For gallant and distinguished service in the field. Brigadier Row was in charge of the operations which resulted in the capture of the Treasury Islands. These operations extended over the period from 26 October to 20 November 1943, by which latter date practically every Jap on the island had been killed. The landing force comprised numerous technical troops in addition to the normal brigade group and the smooth landing of successive transport echelons and the general development of the whole operation was eloquent proof of the thorough and careful way in which Brigadier Row had conceived and planned the expedition. In the operations ashore he displayed similar skill and aggressive and courageous leadership. His personal appearance at each threatened point of his defences did much to inspire his officers and men with confidence in the general direction of the operation and contributed in large measure to their success.

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Distinguished Conduct Medal.—Sergeant W. A. Cowan.

For distinguished conduct prior to and during operations. Sergeant Cowan was selected to command two patrols to Treasury Islands before the landing of the 8th Brigade Group. The first was sent in to obtain information as to the strength of the enemy and his dispositions. The object of the second patrol was to cut the main telephone line between the enemy observation post on Laifa Point and the Japanese HQ, and to pass information as to enemy movements after the landing had been effected. The first patrol was carried through most successfully under difficult conditions, and resulted in much valuable information being obtained. The second patrol successfully cut the telephone line at 0400 hours on 27 October and thus delayed information of the approach of the assaulting troops reaching the enemy. During the next five days the patrol was continuously active behind the enemy lines and much information was obtained. Throughout Sergeant Cowan showed resource and determination of a high order and his personal example of coolness in face of considerable danger was largely responsible for the successful achievement of the missions.

  • MBE.—Captain N. L. Fitzpatrick.
  • BEM.—Sergeant A. E. Chamberlain.
  • Mentioned in Despatches—

Captain L. B. Collins, Captain N. L. Fitzpatrick, Sergeant W. Bass.

Recognition of services to the US was made by the following awards:—

  • US Legion of Merit—
  • Degree of Commander.—Brigadier R. A. Row.
  • Degree of Officer.—Brigadier L. G. Goss.
  • Legionnaire.—Captain B. M. Silk.

In addition to the above, two officers received awards while serving with other units. They were Major C. W. H. Tripp, the original staff captain on headquarters, who was awarded the DSO and US Silver Star for services while commanding the First Commando Company of Fiji Guerillas in New Georgia, and Captain K. E. Louden, originally and latterly the brigade intelligence officer, who was awarded the MC while serving at Treasury as a company commander in the 36th Battalion.