Ian Oswald

Ian Oswald Liddell

Ian Oswald Liddell VC (19 October 1919-21 April 1945) was a recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

Born in Shanghai, he enlisted as a private in the King's Shropshire Light Infantry before being commissioned in the Coldstream Guards.

He was 25 years old, and a Temporary Captain in the 5th Battalion, Coldstream Guards, British Army during the Second World War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.

On 3 April 1945 near Lingen, Germany, a bridge over the River Ems was covered by an enemy strong-point and prepared for demolition with . bombs. Captain Liddell, in command of a company which had been ordered to capture the bridge intact volunteered to disarm the demolition devices. He then had to wait some timewhilst covering artillery was brought up. He ran forward alone and, scaling a . high road block, crossed the bridge under intense fire. In full view of the enemy he disconnected the wires at both ends and also the charges under the bridge. His task completed, he climbed on the road block and signalled to the leading platoon that the way was clear for the advance across the river.

He was killed in action, near Rothenburg, Germany, on 21 April 1945. He was shot by a sniper whose bullet killed another solder going through his head and then into Liddell.

His Victoria Cross is displayed at The Guards Regimental Headquarters (Grenadier Guards RHQ) (London, England).


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