The Quiet Gunner at War

El Alamein to the Rhine with the Scottish Divisions

Richmond Gorle

In 1939, Dick Gorle was already a professional soldier, but he was stationed in India. After the Dunkirk disaster, he was recalled and sent north to form the Highland Division Gunners. His memoir sums up the elation of victory, the closeness of comradeship and the desperate sadness of losses.
Date Published :
February 2012
Publisher :
Pen and Sword
Illustration :
16 pages b/w plates
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781848845404
Pages : 224
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : In stock
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In 1939 Dick Gorle was already a professional soldier but stationed in India. After the Dunkirk disaster he was recalled and initially involved in training recruits at Plymouth before going north to form the Highland Division Gunners.

We hear of the journey to Egypt and thereafter it is intense action at El Alamein under Monty and the long grueling advance to Tripoli. The invasion of Sicily followed and Gorle describes the horrors of war in the mountains and towns while the locals appeared almost oblivious to the momentous events unfolding around them.

Called back to attend Staff College, Gorle rejoined the fray in North West Europe as his Regiment, part of the Lowland Division, received thanks and welcome from those liberated, and fierce and deadly resistance from the retreating Germans. His memoir sums up the elation of victory, the closeness of comradeship and the desperate sadness of losses.

About The Author

Richmond, known as Dick to his friends, was a career soldier. He had planned to join the Navy, but this was ruled out by colour blindness. He was plucked from the secure and certain British India of the time where routine and detail were paramount, to join the scramble to train the part timers and new recruits who were to form the backbone of the army at war. This he did very well, and he was moved on to help train the men who were to form the gunners of the re-formed 51st Highland Division. In North Africa Dick was second in Command of 128 (H) Field Regiment RA. He was mentioned in despatches in North Africa in recognition of gallant and distinguished services, and later in Northern Europe with 15th Scottish Division and 181st Field Regiment RA, he was awarded the Military Cross for his actions during the Battle of Blerick in Holland.

After the war he served in Greece and Palestine, and then spent three very successful years as a liaison officer in Fort Bragg USA, home of the 82nd Airborne Division where he became an honorary member of the US Airborne. Other postings included UK and Hong Kong.

After a period of ill health which started with a serious car accident when he was commanding the Royal Artillery Regiment in Hong Kong, he died in 1971 at the young age of 61. He had retired as a Lieutenant Colonel and had taken a job in charge of administration at the Junior Leaders Regiment RA in Bramcote near Nuneaton. He was there for thirteen years and it was there that he died. He was given a fine military funeral including transportation of his coffin on a gun carriage and a red beret proudly placed on it [the Airborne beret]. A memorial plaque was placed on the wall of the chapel there.

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