[Close this Window]

Major T.D. Ross D.S.O.


Transcript of Distinguished Service Order Citation

Brigade

14 Infantry

Division

3rd Indian

Unit

2nd Battalion The Black Watch
Royal Highland Regiment

Date of
Recommendation

22 August 1944

Regtl. No.

148988

Rank and Name

Major (Acting) Thomas Douglas ROSS

Action for which recommended :-

During operations in defence of the KYSENLET PASS between 28 May and 2 June 1944, a party of approx 20 enemy with a LMG and including snipers dug in astride the track on a narrow ridge about 200 yards south of the summit of the PASS. The presence of enemy in this position was a constant menace to the defences of the PASS and snipers covered the water point. Major Ross set himself the task of clearing the enemy from their positions. He carried out many daring personal recces and led a series of attacks with British and African troops against the enemy positions which were only approachable by a narrow track through dense jungle. After 36 hours of constant endeavour and solely due to the determination and cool leadership of Major Ross, the enemy were forced to abandon their positions having lost at least three killed. Throughout this action, Major Ross showed a complete disregard for his personal safety and his conduct was an inspiration to all ranks.

On 9 June 1944, Major Ross volunteered to lead a 5 day fighting patrol of two platoons from ?(illegible)? to BOGON with the object of attracting enemy forces southwards from the YWATHIT - HOPIN area. The patrol route led over mountains, leech-infested country rendered almost impassable by the monsoon. Words can hardly describe the difficulties of the country and the outward journey which would normally take 36 hours , took 3 1/2 days. It was only due to the outstanding qualities of doggedness and cheerful determination displayed by Major Ross that the objective was reached. The patrol was unfortunate in not meeting any Japanese, although Major Ross assiduously sought an encounter. He did , however, succeed in finding and burning a small dump of rice and brought back much valuable information about enemy movements in the valley north of KOHNYIN.

On 18 July 1944, prior to the attack on NGUSHARAWNG, Major Ross personally led a series of small patrols which penetrated into enemy positions, many of which he pinpointed by drawing enemy fire and setting off their booby traps. As a result of his endeavours a new attack route was found and this may have had some bearing on the fact that the enemy abandoned NGUSHARAWNG before an attack went in.

On the evening of 6 August 1944 Major Ross with his company was ordered to relieve the other Black Watch company which had been in action with enemy in very strong positions on the track between Pt 1497 and LABU. On 7 August after a sleepless night  in close contact with the enemy and with the bulk of his men tired after 19 weeks operations, Major Ross fought a brilliant action lasting throughout the hours of daylight. Entirely due to his skilful leadership and inspiring conduct in the face of heavy fire, the enemy was pushed  out of one position after another, and finally about 1700 hrs a bayonet charge drove the enemy from his last position covering the village.

From the beginning of training for LRP and throughout operations in BURMA lasting from 25 Mar to 17 Aug, Major Ross, first as Battalion  Adjutant, and then as a Company Commander, has set an example of selfless devotion to duty and personal courage which have been an inspiration to all ranks.


Recommended By

Lieut-Colonel G.G.Green
Cmdg. 2nd Bn. The Black Watch (R.H.R.)
 

Honour or Reward

D.S.O.

Signed By

Major General W.D.A. Lentaigne
Comd. 3 Ind. Div.

General G. Giffard
Commander-in-Chief 11 Army Group 

(London Gazette 26.04.45)

[Top]