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FURNESS, The Hon. CHRISTOPHER

Rank:
Lieutenant
Service No:
53422
Date of Death:
24/05/1940
Age:
28
Regiment/Service:
Welsh Guards
 
1st Bn.
Awards:
V C
Panel Reference:
Column 34.
Memorial:
DUNKIRK MEMORIAL
Additional Information:
Son of Marmaduke Furness, 1st Viscount Furness, and of the Viscountess Furness (nee Hogg), of Westminster, London.

Citation

The citation in the London Gazette of 5th February, 1946, gives the following details: Lt. Furness was in command of the Carrier Platoon, Welsh Guards, from May 17th-24th, 1940, at Arras. His extremely high degree of leadership and dash imbued his command with a magnificent offensive spirit during their constant patrols and many local actions throughout this period. On May 22nd, 1940, he was wounded, but refused to be evacuated. The enemy had encircled the town on three sides, and Lt. Furness's platoon, together with a small force of light tanks, were ordered to cover the withdrawal of over 40 transport vehicles to Douai. Heavy small arms and anti-tank gun fire blocked the column. Lt. Furness, realising the seriousness of the situation, with three carriers and the light tanks attacked at close quarters the strongly entrenched enemy, inflicting heavy losses. His carriers were hit, most of their crews killed or wounded, and the tanks were put out of action. When his own carrier was disabled and the driver and gunner killed, Lt. Furness, despite his wounds, engaged the enemy in hand to hand combat until he was killed. His magnificent act of self-sacrifice against hopeless odds made the enemy withdraw long enough to allow the large transport column to get clear unmolested, and to permit the evacuation of some of the wounded of his own platoon and of the light tanks.

Commemorative Certificate

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Casualty Record Detail

DUNKIRK MEMORIAL

Country:
France
Locality:
Nord

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