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Sgt. Norman A Finch VC - Zeebrugge Raid

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Woonplaats: Jabbeke, Flanders - Home of the Marine Jagdgeschwader in WW I

BerichtGeplaatst: 13 Apr 2008 22:41    Onderwerp: Sgt. Norman A Finch VC - Zeebrugge Raid Reageer met quote

Norman Augustus Finch VC MSM (26 December 1890- 15 March 1966) was an English 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.

Finch signed on to the Royal Marines in January 1908 and received basic training at Eastney. For the next four years he served on various ships and shore stations and in June 1913 was promoted to Bombadier and this was soon followed by further rises to Corporal in 1915 and Sergeant in 1917. He joined the 4th Battalion on 23rd March 1918.

He was 27 years old, and a Sergeant in the Royal Marine Artillery, Royal Marines during the First World War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.

On 22/23 April 1918 at Zeebrugge, Belgium, Sergeant Finch was second in command of the pom-poms and Lewis gun in the foretop of HMS Vindictive. At one period Vindictive was being hit every few seconds, but Sergeant Finch and the officer in command kept up a continuous fire, until two heavy shells made direct hits on the foretop killing or disabling everyone except Sergeant Finch who was, however, severely wounded. Nevertheless he remained in his battered and exposed position, harassing the enemy on the Mole until the foretop received another direct hit, putting the remainder of the armament completely out of action. His award was by virtue of ballot.

World War II brought Quarter Master Finch back to the Portsmouth Division in 1938. He appears to have spent most of the war as Quarter Master, serving as a Storekeeper Officer (Lieutenant) at 104 (Training) RM Brigade, R.M. Training Group Dalditch, then Devon. On 15th August 1945 he was released from service and in 1964 was made Divisional Sergeant-Major of HM Bodyguard of the Yeoman of the Guard

His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Royal Marines Museum, Southsea, England.
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