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B A T T L E F I E L D    K O R E A

RALSTON, Gavin Carmichael, Lance Corporal (2/400615),
1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, 1952

Lance Corporal Ralston was a member of twenty-five patrols against the enemy, acting many times as forward scout. His calmness and unusual stalking ability meant that he was often instrumental in gaining valuable information by leading reconnaissance patrols in close proximity to enemy-occupied positions. One such patrol was subjected to heavy mortaring and several casualties were incurred. Lance Corporal Ralston guided the walking wounded to safety and then returned, still under fire, and with complete disregard for his own safety, to escort the stretcher parties. On 15 September 1952, his platoon conducted a daylight fighting patrol. At one stage platoon headquarters was heavily mortared by the enemy and the platoon signaller was severely wounded. Together with his platoon commander, he moved through heavy fire into the open and rendered first aid to the casualty; then, still under fire and in full view of the enemy, he remained with the wounded man for twenty minutes until he could be evacuated. This non-commissioned officer displayed the highest example to his section, whether on patrol or under bombardment in the forward defence lines. His consistent cheerfulness and excellent personal conduct at all times were a constant inspiration to his men and contributed to the excellent morale of his section.

RICHARDSON, Robert, Lance Corporal (2/10667),
2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, 1953

Private Richardson was rifle section commander and second-in-command of a section throughout May and June 1953 while his company was in the line, participating in many patrols of all types with exceptional courage and enthusiasm. On the night of 23/24 May 1953, he particularly distinguished himself when commanding a section in an ambush patrol on Durham Ridge in front of Point 159. Shortly after taking up its position the patrol was engaged by an enemy force over twenty strong. During the fierce close-quarter fight that followed, the patrol leader and four members, out of a total of thirteen, were wounded. Quickly assessing the situation, Private Richardson immediately took command of the patrol and withdrew it, taking the wounded with him. Though the withdrawal was closely followed by the enemy, Private Richardson controlled the fire and movement of the few unwounded members of the patrol so skillfully that the enemy was prevented from overrunning it. It was later confirmed that six enemy soldiers were killed in this engagement. The high degree of leadership, initiative and determination that Private Richardson displayed throughout this action were typical of the qualities he demonstrated on many other occasions in contact with the enemy-qualities which have gained him the admiration and respect of all ranks who have served with him.


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