Captain Piper is Regimental Technical Adjutant and is responsible for tank recovery.

Between 3rd and 5th Oct and during battles for Pt 355 and Pt 317 there were some 14 Centurions bogged or otherwise disabled. Many of these tanks were in full view of the enemy and in front of the leading infantry.

They were continuously shelled and mortared. Throughout the whole operation Captain Piper acted with the greatest determination and courage. Nothing could deter him from recovering the tanks of the regiment and his leadership was of the highest order. He set a magnificent example to his fitters and recovery crews and it was entirely due to his determination that all the tanks were successfully recovered.

On 5th Oct during the AUSTRALIAN attack on Pt 317, three CENTURIONS were disabled in an area which had been by-passed by the infantry. The tanks were subject to intense mortar and artillery fire and there were many and active CHINESE snipers in the area. As soon as the information was received about these tanks Captain Piper set out with a CENTURION Tug and an ARV. He arrived as it was getting dark, inspected each tank in turn and ignored any effort by the CHINESE to interfere with his duty. One tanks was recovered and the othr two, having both tracks off, were seated up.

This task took over three hours and Captain Piper was exposed the whole time. He directed and encouraged his men and it was only the impossibility of putting new tracks on a CENTURION in total darkness that caused him finally and reluctantly to withdraw. On his way back to his Regimental HQ he twice took the CENTURION Tug up to the leading infantry to evacuate the wounded.

Captain Piper’s devotion to duty and inflexible determination were a credit to his service and a shining example of courage to the many who witnessed his action.

Lt-Col Sir WG Lowther, Bart
8th King’s Royal Irish Hussars

Related topics

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  2. Korea 1950-51 timeline
  3. Obituary: Col RW Piper – 8H
  4. Centurion tank