Personal info

  • Name: John HARRISON
  • D.O.B: 2nd November, 1890
  • D.O.A: 3rd May, 1917
  • D.O.D: 3rd May, 1917
  • Award: Victoria Cross
  • Occupation at time of action: Temporary Second Lieutenant, 11th Battalion The East Yorkshire Regiment, 92nd Brigade, 31st Division
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Oppy, France 3 May 1917

3 May 1917

More details about:
The First World War 1917 

Oppy, just behind the Hindenburg Line, lay north-east of Arras on the far side of the southern end of Vimy Ridge. It had already been attacked on 29 April 1917 (see above). The 92nd Brigade mounted a further unsuccessful attack on the village and its adjoining wood on 3 May 1917. Temporary Second Lieutenant J Harrison, 11th (S) Battalion The East Yorkshire Regiment, was awarded a VC for his gallantry in this action.

Citation

 For most conspicuous bravery and self-sacrifice in an attack. Owing to darkness and to smoke from the enemy barrage, and from our own, and to the fact that our objective was in a dark wood, it was impossible to see when our barrage had lifted off the enemy front line. Nevertheless, 2nd Lt. Harrison led his company against the enemy trench under heavy rifle and machine-gun fire, but was repulsed. Reorganising his command as best he could in No Man’s Land, he again attacked in darkness under terrific fire but with no success. Then, turning round, this gallant officer single-handed made a dash at the machine-gun, hoping to knock out the gun and so save the lives of many of his company. His self-sacrifice and absolute disregard of danger was an inspiring example to all. (He is reported missing, believed killed). 

Fourth Supplement to The London Gazette of 12 June 1917. 14 June 1917, Numb. 30130, p. 5866

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