05 June 2011

George Cross: K. Smith


Signalman, Royal Corps of Signals; attached Long Range Desert Group

Born: 7 December 1920, Market Rasen, Lincolnshire
Died: 10 January 1945, Ist, Yugoslavia

Citation: The KING has been graciously pleased to approve the posthumous award of the George Cross, in recognition of most conspicuous gallantry in carrying out hazardous work in a very brave manner, to: —
No. 2328696 Signalman Kenneth SMITH, Royal Corps of Signals (Humby, near Grantham, Lincs.).

[London Gazette issue 37311 dated 19 Oct 1945, published 16 Oct 1945.]

Note: Smith was attached to an LRDG patrol based on the Adriatic island of Ist. Sabotage was a daily occurance. He found a time-bomb on a table at his detachment's billet, which was shared with civilians and their children. Realising that the bomb was ticking and could explode at any moment, he carried it out of the building. It exploded while he was still carrying it, and he was blown to pieces. He was the only casualty of the blast, and undoubtably saved many lives.

The island of Ist is now part of Croatia.

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