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F O R E I G N    A W A R D S

North Korea, 29 October 1950. Troops entering Pakchon.
(AWM HOBJ1625)

PATCH, Harold Edward, Temporary Corporal (2/3561),
1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, 1952

Temporary Corporal Patch, a member of 1 RAR, distinguished himself by gallantry in action against the enemy in the vicinity of Kangao-ri, Korea, on 2 July 1952. As patrol leader of a raiding party sent forward to neutralise a heavily fortified hostile emplacement which threatened the success of friendly elements in this area, he moved forward with enthusiasm and a determination that inspired his companions. Quickly manoeuvring up the steep slope towards the enemy bunkers, ignoring intense hostile fire, he organised his men for the final assault. Without hesitation, he led his patrol in a spirited charge through heavy machine-gun fire to the first of the enemy bunkers. On reaching the entrance, he discovered that the opening was only large enough for one man to enter at a time. As a comrade attempted to crawl into the tunnel-like entrance, he provided supporting fire. Suddenly a burst of automatic weapons fire from within the bunker wounded Corporal Patch and his companion. Disregarding his wound, he succeeded in pulling his companion from the opening and moved back inside to engage the enemy. Despite a second wound received in this action, he continued with his mission until the position had been neutralised. The courageous and aggressive action and selfless devotion to duty displayed by Corporal Patch were a source of inspiration to those who served alongside him or heard of his courage under fire.


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