Chindit Awards - Military Cross

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Lieutenant J.C. Salazar M.C.

[Transcript of Recommendation of Award]

Military Cross - Chindits Awards


14 Infantry


3rd Indian


1st Bn The Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Regt.

Date of

31st May 1944

Regtl. No.


Rank and Name

Lieutenant John Colby SALAZAR

Action for which recommended -

61 Column had been ordered to act offensively against INDAW from the south. In order to carry out this task and fulfil its part in the Column plan, Lieut. SALAZAR's platoon was ordered to an area about 2 miles S.W. of INDAW. Lieut. SALAZAR had been ordered to destroy as many Japs and as much material as he possibly could during the period 21-24 April 1944. A platoon ambush on a track leading south west from INDAW yielded but two dead Japs. Lieut. SALAZAR therefore, decided to operate yet closer. By active patrolling he was able to locate six petrol and oil dumps. In order to reach these dumps it was necessary to cross a great deal of open paddy and pass along a track which was beside a Jap company defensive locality. Realising that in order to reach a position from which it would be possible to destroy the dumps the smaller the party the better, he decided to carry out the task himself. He was able to reach a position within a short distance of a Jap guard post. Then deliberately he fired incendiary bullets from his rifle at dispersed petrol dumps. In all he set fire to 200 forty gallon containers of petrol and oil. After ensuring the fires were burning all right he withdrew a short distance and laid in wait beside the track leading to the Jap company defensive position. In a short time he was rewarded by being able to kill a Jap runner who was shortly afterwards followed by another. The second runner was wounded by Lieut. SALAZAR who attempted to bring him back to HQ but unfortunately the Jap did not survive the journey. Lieut. SALAZAR also located three more dumps in the area allotted to him, These dumps were later successfully attached by fighter bombers.

On 24th May 1944 61 Column attacked the village of ZIGON at 1830 hours. Some enemy were killed, some dispersed and others had obviously taken cover in positions inside the village. At 1930 hours Lieut. SALAZAR was ordered to take a patrol inside the village and ascertain the enemy situation. With six men he entered the village and by brilliant section stalking was able to kill two Japs causing others to flee to southern end of the village where other action was taken against them. Although the village contained more than thirty houses he carried out a house to house search of more than half the village returning with seven pack horses which he loaded up with booty. Twice more during the night this officer re-entered the village with patrols from his platoon to maintain touch with the Japs.

This officer with his personal example and leadership and obvious determination to get to grips with the enemy, has produced and maintained a first class fighting platoon.

Recommended By

Lt. Col. T.J. Barrow
Comd. 1st Bn Bedfs Herts Regiment

Honour or Reward

Military Cross

Signed By

W. Lentaigne, Major General
Comd 3 Ind.Div.

W.J.Slim Lieut-Gen
G.O.C-in-Chief, Fourteenth Army

G. Giffard, General
C-in-C 11 Army Group

(London Gazette 31 August 1944)