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B A T T L E F I E L D    K O R E A

HUGHES, James Curnow, Lieutenant (4/7001),
3rd Battalion, Royal AustralianRegiment, 1951

Lieutenant Hughes commanded 4 Platoon of B Company during the bitter 24-hour action of 7 October 1951 at feature 174224. He showed outstanding leadership and gallantry far above that demanded in the normal call of duty. He personally led his platoon in a grenade fight at a threatened portion of his company's perimeter driving the enemy off with heavy casualties. On reaching his objective he led his platoon against devastating enemy artillery and mortar fire and the repeated counter-attacks of the Chinese battalion against his company. The success of his company in this action was achieved largely through his personal drive and efficiency and display of bravery when he frequently exposed himself to enemy fire while encouraging the members of his platoon.

HUTCHESON, John Malcolm, Captain (2/502),
28th Field Regiment, Royal Australian Engineers (attached RAR), 1953

Captain Hutcheson rendered outstanding service in the Commonwealth Division initially as pioneer officer in an infantry battalion and later as intelligence officer in 28 Field Engineer Regiment. As pioneer officer, one of his main tasks was the repair and maintenance of minefield fences. In the areas for which he was responsible there had been heavy shelling and considerable enemy activity over a long period and many of the fences had disappeared entirely. On his own initiative, Captain Hutcheson went out repeatedly night after night and frequently in daylight over a long period to locate and restore these fences. Many of these areas were very close to and in full view of enemy positions. On many occasions he came under fire. Owing to the risk from unmarked mines, he did much of his work on his own, since parties of infantry could not safely enter these areas until the minefields had been located and marked. When his battalion came into reserve he continued to render invaluable assistance to succeeding infantry units and engineers by volunteering to accompany their patrols as a guide in mined areas which he alone knew. Through his utterly fearless devotion to duty, dogged perseverance and lack of regard for his own personal safety, he succeeded in locating and restoring most of the minefields in the area, thereby averting many friendly casualties. As intelligence officer in the Engineer Regiment, he not only worked himself unsparingly in normal routine duties, but also personally completed the valuable and meticulous re-survey of minefields in the Kansa Line. His initiative, enthusiasm and keen devotion to duty made his an outstanding contribution to the operational efficiency of the regiment and the division and his services merit the highest praise.


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