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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

of 27 February 1951, 12 Platoon, D Company, was ordered to attack and capture feature 614. After air and artillery bombardment, 12 Platoon attacked with medium machine-gun support with Corporal Opie in command of the leading section. The men attacked up a steep and narrow ridgeline, over open ground for a distance of 200 yards. The section advanced to within ten yards of the first objective and came under fire from three enemy positions. One of these was a machine-gun. Corporal Opie immediately led his section in an attack on the three enemy strong points. Seven enemy soldiers were killed by small arms fire and grenades. The section advanced and secured the ridgeline that was the first part of the objective. During the attack Corporal Opie used his Owen gun from the hip and periodically used a rifle he was carrying to engage the enemy on the rear part of feature 614. Corporal Opie disposed of at least three of the enemy with grenades and rifle fire. The section then reorganised and Corporal Opie called for more grenades to continue the second part of the objective. Before advancing on the second group of enemy pits, Corporal Opie used enemy weapons captured during the initial assault so as to conserve his own ammunition. He used enemy grenades and, later in the attack, employed an MI rifle and a carbine. Immediately he had reorganised the section, Corporal Opie led a further attack on the second part of the objective. At this stage the section came under fire from two further enemy pits, one containing a machine-gun. Corporal Opie continued to advance and silenced the enemy pits with small arms fire and grenades. By then one of his men had been badly wounded and Corporal Opie, further exposing himself to fire from enemy positions some distance down the ridge from the feature, pulled the wounded man to a covered position. With the key point of the enemy defence silenced, Corporal Opie held his position and his platoon commander moved through with the second section to complete the consolidation of the objective. Through his unselfish devotion to duty, initiative and great courage, Corporal Opie made the capture of the position possible, thereby enabling the battalion and, subsequently, the brigade to continue the advance.


ROWLINSON, William Josiah, Corporal (2/400239),
3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, 1951

On 23 April 1951, the battalion was defending the area of Mokton-Ni. D Company had been assigned the role of right flank protection on feature 504 and the ridgeline to the north-east. Corporal Rowlinson, section leader of 12 Platoon, occupied the left forward section of this forward platoon. During the first night of occupation (23 April 1951), an enemy probing patrol attempted to penetrate his section position and was repulsed. On the morning of 24 April 1951, an enemy group of platoon strength launched continuous attacks against this section position for a period of five to six hours, only to be driven back again and again sustaining heavy casualties. During these attacks Corporal Rowlinson and six members of his section were wounded. The wounded were evacuated but Corporal Rowlinson remained on duty and continued

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