Rayene Simpson VC

Rayene Simpson VC

Rayene Simpson VC
Warrant Officer Class II Rayene Stewart SIMPSON DCM
Australian Army Training Team

Rayene Simpson was born on 16th February 1926 at Chippendale, New South Wales. He died at Tokyo, Japan on 18th October 1978 and was buried at the Yokohama War Cemetary, Japan.

"On 6th May 1969, Warrant Officer Simpson was serving as Commander of 232nd Mobile Strike Force of 5th Special Forces Group on a search and clear operation in Kontum Province, near the Laotian border. When one of his platoons became heavily engaged with the enemy, he led the remainder of his company to its assistance.

"As the company moved forward, an Australian Warrant Officer commanding one of the platoons was seriously wounded and the assault began to falter. Warrant Officer Simpson, at great personal risk carried the Warrant Officer to safety. He then returned to his company where, with complete disregard for his safety, he crawled forward to within ten metres of the enemy and threw grenades into their positions.

"On 11 May 1969, in the same operation, Warrant Officer Simpson's Battalion Commander was killed and an Australian Warrant Officer and several others wounded. Warrant Officer Simpson quickly organised two platoons and led them to the position of the contact. Warrant Officer Simpson came under heavy fire.

"Disregarding his own safety, he moved forward in the face of accurate enemy machine gun fire, in order to cover the initial evacuation of casualties. At the risk of almost certain death he made several attempts to move further forward towards his Battalion Commander's body but on each occasion he was stopped by heavy fire.

"Realising the position was becoming untenable, Warrant Officer Simpson alone and still under enemy fire covered the withdrawal until the wounded were removed from the immediate vicinity.

"Warrant Officer Simpson's repeated acts of personal bravery in this operation were an inspiration to all Vietnamese, United States and Australian soldiers who served with him. His conspicuous gallantry was in the highest tradition of the Australian Army."

London Gazette: 26 August 1969-1 Supplement, 29 August 1969

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