Geoffrey died on 5 March 2012 aged almost 88.

Lt GW Gould, OBE , MC, KMN
Lt GW Gould, OBE, MC, KMN

Born in England on 17 June 1924, for most of the first four years of his life, Geoffrey lived in Northern India with his parents. His father was a senior member of the Indian Civil Service.

There is an amusing anecdote about why his time in India came to an end.

At the age of four, he was spotted by his father standing on a soapbox, drilling no less than 16 servants to move up and down the courtyard, speaking in Hindustani a Marathi dialect. His father was appalled by the spectacle and decided the only way to prevent repetitions was to send Geoffrey home to live with his uncle and aunt.

He went to rugby as a boarder in 1937. He did one year at Brasenose College at Oxford University, before being called up for compulsory military service. His original preference was to join The Fleet Air Arm but his sight was not good enough.

He joined the Army instead and after Officer Training joined The 8th Kings Royal Irish Hussars in Nov 1944, then at Maeseyck (Belgium).

He joined ‘C’ Sqn taking over 4th Troop. His big engagement was St Joost in Jan 1945. His tank was hit by a Bazooka which killed two of his crew.

On 20th April 1945, he was involved in the attack on Wulmstorf and Daerestors villages. It was at this time that Geoffrey was shot in the head by a sniper.

Just after this that he was presented with his Military Cross by Field Marshall Montgomery.

Geoffrey returned to the Regiment in Berlin. He had the misfortune to be selected to go and dine with the Russians in the eastern zone. On his return at about 01.00 hours, he seemed close to death. He was sent to hospital and endured a stomach pump. He returned a few days later.

He recalled that on arrival at the Officers Mess they were plied with drink, white vodka he thought. He had been warned and tried to dispose of as much as possible, but the Toasts were direct and difficult to avoid.

On taking his discharge in 1947, Geoffrey returned to Oxford to complete his Degree.

His first job was in Malaya with a Rubber Trading Agency.

He met his first wife Verna in Kuala Lumpur. They had 3 sons, one of which died from appendicitis aged 6 and another Michael who died in 2004. He worked in Malaya for a total of 17 years, including 7 years in the British Colonial Administration as a District Officer during the Emergency. He then worked for the post-Independence Malay/ Chinese Government.

He was awarded the OBE and the KMN from the Malaysian Government.

On returning to the UK he worked for BP Chemicals.

After the death of Verna, he met and married Kay who caused a stir among his contemporaries and younger members of the Officers Mess by her attitude to them.

After Kay’s death, he married Heather. This was a most happy marriage and lasted 8 years, having in 2003 moved to Australia at the request of his son Michael and spent a happy time there until his death.

Related topics

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  2. North-West Europe 1944-45 timeline
  3. Gallantry Award: Citation and Immediate Award of The Military Cross – Lt GW Gould, 8H