- Contributed by
- People in story:
- Hugh Tristram's Fifty Sixth. With Our Forces Overseas.
- Location of story:
- THE 67th FIELD REGIMENT R.A. AT ANZIO
- Background to story:
- Article ID:
- Contributed on:
- 02 February 2005
The 67th Field Regiment R.A. which is released as fighting in the Anzio Beach Head up to March lst is a Territorial Regiment recruited from Worcestershire men. Its Commanding Officer, Lt.Col. J.C. FLAY (2 The Avenue, Bromwich Road Worcester) has been eighteen years in the regiment, passing through evey rank from Second Lieutenant.
The Regiment landed at Anzio with the assault Brigade, its guns and equipment going ashore in DUKWS. Since then its guns have been continuously in action. At one period they were in support of a formation of United States Combat Engineers. The liaison between the two were perfect. Officers and men made friends quickly. Though the two units are no longer together it is said that one can still hear a trace of American twang among the Gun sites and a hint of British slang from the lips of American Engineers.
It was while supporting the Americans that the Regiment managed to get an Observation Post into a Salient which gave theO.P. Officer a view right behind the enemy line. He could see parties of Germans washing; others cooking, others just walking about. As soon as a group of fifteen or so collected they were shot up. On one occasion a German vanished in a sheet of flame; he was probably carrying grenades. Another time, two Officers were seen disputing over a map. One was killed.
Writing of Marlborough, Winson Churchill said: "Great Captains must take their chances with the rest." Here is the story of a Captain of the 67th Field Regt. and his wireless operator who were more than willing to take chances.
On Feb.4th Captain Jupp (7, Stormont Rd. London N.6) was acting as O.P. OFFICER in support of the Gordon Highlanders. Early in the day the three forward companies were over run. Although in a most exposed position, he remained there for several hours, engaging the enemy. At 1600 hours he joined the Battalion which ws ordered to counter attack to restore the position. He went in with the leading Company but the appalling ground and the failure of his wireless set lost him direct contact with the Company. He went on alone, despite heavy mortar and shell fire, and engaged several targets with no little succeess.
Eventually he managed to contact his company, traversing fire swept the ground to reach it. There were only fifteen men left in the Company and with them he formed a defensive position near the objective. His wireless was working again and it was his only link with the rest of the battalion.
He was ordered to fall back on the rear Company and stayed with them till nearly midnight, when the Battalion withdrew. His party was one of the last to leave, staying to evacuate six casualties on their carriers.
Captain Jupp's wireless operator, Gunner William Lester Cafferey (18 Springhill Avenue, Springhill, near Birmingham) manned his set in the exposed position in which they were left at first light. He never left the set even when shells dropped close to him. When the O.P. was supporting the counter-attack, Gunner Cafferey's carrier was repeatedly hit by direct machine gun fire. He never left the vehicle to take cover but continued to transmit fire orders.
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