25 July 2010

Victoria Cross: W. A. Bloomfield


Captain, Scouts Corps, South African Mounted Brigade

Born: 30 January 1873, Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: 12 May 1954, Ermelo, South Africa

Citation: For most conspicuous bravery. Finding that, after being heavily attacked in an advanced and isolated position [at Mlali, German East Africa, on 24 August 1916], the enemy were working round his flanks, Captain Bloomfield evacuated his wounded, and subsequently withdrew his command to a new position, he himself being amongst the last to retire.
On arrival at the new position he found that one of the wounded - No. 2475 Corporal D. M. P. Bowker - had been left behind. Owing to very heavy fire he experienced difficulties in having the wounded Corporal brought in.
Rescue meant passing over some 400 yards of open ground, swept by heavy fire, in full view of the enemy.
This task Captain Bloomfield determined to face himself, and, unmindful of personal danger, he succeeded in reaching Corporal Bowker and carrying him back, subjected throughout the double journey to heavy machine-gun and rifle fire.
This act showed the highest degree of valour and endurance.

[London Gazette issue 29885 dtd 30 Dec 1916, published 29 Dec 1916.]

Note: Mlali is located in the central portion of what is now Tanzania.

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