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B R I T I S H     I M P E R I A L    D E C O R A T I O N S


BURNETT, James, Lance Corporal (1/400092),
3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, 1951

On 4 October 1951 during the attack by 1 KOSB battalion onto feature 355, C Company, 3 RAR, was ordered to move to the rear of the feature and attack the enemy from that quarter. The enemy was entrenched on the high ground MR184196 Majon-mi sheet. C Company launched its attack at 9.00 a.m. and, by 10.15 a.m., was on the high ground engaged in close-quarter fighting with the Chinese forces. At approximately 10.45 a.m., 7 Platoon was instructed to advance along the ridge towards the main objective, 355, to destroy or dislodge the enemy. The platoon commander 7 Platoon reported that his platoon was being held up by superior numbers of enemy entrenched in bunkers in well-prepared positions. The company commander moved forward to investigate the position and observed Lance Corporal Burnett with a Bren gun approximately 25 yards in front of the remainder of his platoon. Lance Corporal Burnett was throwing grenades into the enemies' pits. He then picked up his Bren gun and, firing it from the hip, dashed over the open ground at the enemy on whom he was inflicting heavy casualties. Throughout this action Lance Corporal Burnett was under heavy mortar fire, grenade and small arms fire. Once Lance Corporal Burnett had gained the initiative and dislodged the Chinese from their well dug-in positions, the remainder of the section was able to advance and clean out the enemy who were killed, taken prisoner or fled in panic, leaving behind them large quantities of weapons, ammunition and equipment. Lance Corporal Burnett's act of bravery was far above the normal course of his duty and his aggressive action enabled him to gain the initiative and so dislodge a very strong and determined enemy.


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