View Full Version : Military Cross For Iraq Boat Bomb Hero

07-28-07, 07:49 AM
Date : 28.07.07

A royal Marine who survived a bomb attack on a boat patrol in Iraq which killed four colleagues and severely injured three others, has been awarded the Military Cross.Corporal Terry Knights, of Plymouth's 539 Assault Squadron, was serving with his unit on the Shatt al Arab Waterway in Basra when he and his men came under attack.

The boat patrol was hit by an improvised explosive device on November 11 last year.

One of the servicemen was from 539 Assault Squadron Royal Marines and another from 45 Commando Royal Marines, both based at Turnchapel, Plymouth. The others were Army personnel.

In the latest Operational Honours List, Cpl Knights was praised for his "leadership and clarity of thought in extreme circumstances".

After the attack, the 39-year-old helped organise the force to recover and take the casualties for treatment.

The incident happened just a week into the unit's six-month deployment.

Cpl Knights said: "I recognised the threat of a secondary improvised explosive device and also the possible threat from a hostile crowd which gathered immediately on the river bank - there might have been a gunman among them. However, I and the others got on with what needed to be done."

He stressed that although he received the award because of his leadership, he could not have achieved his aim without the support of his men. He added: "This award is for those that we lost, those who played an equally vital role during the contact and also for the strength and courage of the wounded."

The MC is the third highest military honorary decoration awarded to the services. It is granted to personnel in recognition of "gallantry during active operations against the enemy".

The lethal attack hit home in the Westcountry last year. Outside Plymouth's Turnchapel unit, where 539 RM is based, a candlelit vigil was held for the dead and the green and yellow regimental flags were flown at half-mast.

Last night, Lord John Burnett, former Royal Marine and MP of Torridge and West Devon, said Cpl Knights was an exemplary Royal Marine.

Lord Burnett was a Troop Commander in the Royal Marines on active service in Borneo and the Middle East, serving with both Bickleigh-based 42 Commando, near Plymouth and Taunton-based 40 Commando RM.

He said: "Cpl Knight showed courage of an exemplary nature. His bravery is in the highest tradition of the Royal Marines - the Royal Marine Commandos always exceed our expectations."

Cpl Knights was born in Nelson Hospital, South Island, New Zealand, and lived in Motueka, New Zealand, until 1988 when he came to the UK and joined the Royal Marines in 1991.

He initially specialised in heavy weapons and reconnaissance and later as a vehicle mechanic.


Zulu 36
07-28-07, 11:40 AM
Well Done, Royal!! :thumbup: