Albert Reginald Victor Stone
Tales of valour
Reconnaissance Corps, Royal Armoured Corps
On 4th September 1944 'B' Squadron were leading the Division moving on the left flank of the Corps. The leading armoured car reported enemy approaching the bridge over the Escaut at Hadinghe on the left flank of the Squadron axis. Lieutenant Stone was detached with his carrier troop, one anti-tank gun and one 3-inch mortar to deal with the enemy while the Squadron continued to advance. When Lieutenant Stone was 300 yards from the bridge, he observed the enemy column approaching. His anti-tank gun destroyed the first three vehicles. The enemy ran from their vehicles towards the bridge, but Lieutenant Stone's troop engaged them with mortar and light machine gun fire and forced them to take cover in a farm. Here he engaged them with 3-inch mortar fire. He then moved forward himself with one section, outflanked and captured an enemy machine-gun post covering the road. As he went forward to engage the farm he came under heavy mortar fire. He immediately engaged the enemy mortar with his own and silenced it.
He then disposed his troop to hold the bridge. He himself went forward with a foot patrol, and captured an 8.8 cm gun and 20mm gun. The remaining enemy then dispersed. Lieutenant Stone on examining the abandoned vehicles found that one contained a large amount of demolition stores.
Lieutenant Stone's bold and determined action against superior numbers not only captured intact this important bridge, but also destroyed or dispersed a considerable force of the enemy.
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