Major 'Pom' Goudge. RIP.

Discussion in 'Memorials & Cemeteries' started by CXX, Sep 10, 2009.

  1. CXX

    CXX New Member

    Major 'Pom' Goudge - Telegraph

    Major 'Pom' Goudge, who has died aged 86, was awarded an MC following fierce fighting in Normandy in 1944 in which he was severely wounded.

    On August 3 1944, the 5th Battalion Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (5 DCLI) launched an attack on a feature known as Tiger Hill, near Jurques, south-west of Caen. Goudge, a lieutenant in the Royal Norfolk Regiment, attached to 5 DCLI, was commanding 11 Platoon in "B" Company.

    As he approached a road junction, a Mark VI German tank broke cover in front of him. He engaged it with a Piat and scored two hits but failed to stop it. The tank opened fire and pinned his platoon to the ground.

    It then closed with the platoon – "at times it was only five yards from the nearest man" – and kept up a hail of machine-gun and 88mm fire. With great difficulty, Goudge manoeuvred his men into a piece of dead ground in a gully, but a second tank then rolled forward and blocked their exit at the further end.

    Two more hits with the Piat were scored on the first tank. These did no damage to it, but they upset the gunner's aim and caused him to blast a German sniper out of a nearby tree.

    The first tank then moved into the hitherto open end of the gully, trapping the platoon. At this moment, however, it was knocked out by a shell and set ablaze.

    Goudge managed to escape with some of his men who had been pinned down and under fire for two and a half hours. Having got them to a place of safety, he found that a number of his platoon were still in the gully and trapped by the second tank. Returning to the gully, he managed to rescue all the unwounded men and some of the walking casualties.

    Two weeks later, at Berjou Ridge, west of Falaise, after a forced crossing of the river Noireau, when one of his NCOs was hit, Goudge went forward alone to rescue him and was badly wounded in the legs. He was awarded an immediate MC.

    Leslie Pomeroy Gondye Goudge, always known as "Pom", was born at Loughborough, Leicestershire, on May 28 1923 and educated locally. He served an apprenticeship with Rolls-Royce at Crewe and joined the Army shortly after the outbreak of the Second World War.

    He was commissioned into the Royal Norfolk Regiment, but was subsequently attached to the DCLI and landed in Normandy with the 5th Battalion in June 1944.

    After he was evacuated to England, he was treated by Sir Archibald McIndoe, the pioneer in plastic surgery. He retired from the Army and took an external degree in Engineering, taking a First, and joined a manufacturer of pumps in Reading as works manager.

    Goudge subsequently became managing director and was involved in extensive overseas travel before he retired in 1986. When he visited Australia, his nickname never failed to delight his colleagues in the subsidiary companies.

    In retirement in Oxfordshire and, latterly, in the Cotswolds, he was a keen amateur photographer. For many years he was an enthusiastic rally driver and owned a number of Allards.

    "Pom" Goudge died on August 3. He married, in 1946, Olga May, who survives him with their son.

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