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Medical Units of 2 NZEF in Middle East and Italy

6 Field Ambulance Moves With Covering Force

6 Field Ambulance Moves With Covering Force

Under the command of 6 Brigade, 6 Field Ambulance pulled out from Elevtherokhorion on 15 April and, travelling at night to avoid the constant air attacks, passed through the shambles of bombed page 90 Elasson and established itself next morning at Tyrnavos amid barley fields and orchards on the roadside. As the field ambulance was to provide medical services for 6 Brigade during the covering action, a main dressing station was set up and advanced dressing stations were placed in each of the valleys between Tyrnavos and Elasson.

Anti-aircraft batteries sited their gun positions around the MDS as soon as it was established. These guns attracted so much attention from enemy bombers that the field ambulance was forced to shift some distance down the road, to what was considered would be a more comfortable position in the shelter of an olive grove. But the deadly Messerschmitts sought them out, and for several hours the men lay flat on their faces in ditches, while at frequent intervals the whole area was raked from end to end and from side to side with machine-gun fire. Miraculously, the men came unscathed through a nerve-wracking experience. With grim satisfaction, they saw a cleverly camouflaged anti-aircraft gun nearby blow a Dornier bomber to bits as it flew low overhead. Larissa, some ten miles to the south, was heavily bombed.