37277 Second Lieutenant Graham Henry ROSS
Military Cross (MC)
Second Lieutenant Ross joined the Australian Regular Army on 26 June 1961. After graduation from the Officer Cadet School, Portsea he was commissioned on 13 June 1964. He joined 7th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment in South Vietnam on 26 April 1967.
During Operation Ballarat in Phuoc Thy Province on 6 August 1967, 2nd Platoon, A Company commanded by Second Lieutenant Ross killed two Viet Cong in a well executed immediate ambush. During the follow-up the platoon encountered more enemy. Leaving a section to provide fire support Second Lieutenant Ross took two sections to a flank and personally led an assault on the enemy, killing another three and wounding several more. However, his platoon came under intense fire from a still larger enemy force, and Second Lieutenant Ross was forced to call for assistance for his men who were sustaining casualties.
The enemy now had the initiative and pinned down the platoon under heavy and accurate fire from automatic weapons and rocket launchers. Second Lieutenant Ross ordered his men to take up fire positions and the platoon resolutely held off the enemy until help came. Second Lieutenant Ross repeatedly exposed himself to throw grenades and to direct his men to more suitable fire positions. He dragged two wounded men to safety.
During the remainder of the battle which lasted for nearly two hours, Second Lieutenant Ross reorganised his platoon, and under heavy fire moved around the perimeter giving encouragement to his men, directing their fire onto the enemy, and supervising the evacuation of the wounded from their exposed positions. Although suffering from a shrapnel wound in the leg, he refused medical attention until the enemy had been beaten off, and all the other wounded had received treatment.
By his resolute actions and disregard for his own safety, Second Lieutenant Ross inspired the whole Company in their successful battle against a determined and highly trained enemy Battalion. His leadership and directions under fire are in the highest traditions of gallantry.
Extract from: Vietnam Veterans Honours and Awards by Alexander M Palmer