From medal recommendation:

“24th Guards Brigade, 1st British Division, 6th American Corps. 2718746 Guardsman William Walter MONTGOMERY, 1st Battalion IRISH GUARDS.

This Guardsman took part in the successful night attack by No. 1 Company on the night 29/30 January [1944] on the left of the main axis ANZIO-ALBANO Road.  On reaching the objective, the ground was found to be covered by enemy tanks who attempted to prevent the Company digging in by putting up flares and firing Machine guns on the digging parties. 

All through the night this Guardsman gave what covering fire he could to this comrades by firing at the enemy tanks with his Bren gun.  This covering fire could not be very effective, but it did force the enemy tanks to limit their visibility by shutting down their Visors and exposed this Guardsman to the continued attention of the enemy. 

When morning 30 January came and no Supporting arms or British Tanks appeared, the Company position was untenable and the Company was ordered to withdraw to another position on the flank.  With great coolness and fine courage this Guardsman, accompanied by Guardsman TAYLOR, set up his Bren on the top of the Railway cutting and gave covering fire to the remainder of the Company as they withdrew across 400 yards of open country.  The top of the railway cutting was level, clearly silhouetting this Guardsman’s head and shoulders.  Besides presenting a good target to the front, he was also liable to be shot in the back by enemy Machine guns on the other side of the valley.  Constant enemy fire did not disturb or deter him from his task.  This Guardsman left the cutting in the last party with his Company Commander.  Twice on the way back across the open stretch of open ground he halted to return the fire of enemy Machine guns once engaging, whilst in a standing position, a concealed German machine gun., 150 yards away and effectively silenced it.  The outstanding courage, skill and coolness of this Guardsman greatly facilitated the withdrawal of his company and there is no doubt that a great man of his comrades owe their lives to his complete disregard for his own safety.

In the action of the night 3 / 4 February this Guardsman was the first to engage and draw the enemy’s fire when the Battalion right flank was exposed.  He was eventually taken prisoner but fought his way out, shooting several of his guards and escaped on a carrier.  An officer in the same party said his coolness and bravery were quite remarkable.  He had several days of really hard fighting and constant shelling but despite the physical strain he must have felt, was full of energy resource and cheerfulness.  Despite being wounded in the leg he was back in the Battalion position that night (February 4).  No personal danger could prevent this Guardsman from doing more than his duty and he earned the greatest admiration from all who saw him.

I strongly recommend this Guardsman for the immediate award of the Distinguished Conduct Medal.

CA Montagu-Douglas-Scott, Officer Commanding, 1st Battalion Irish Guards

Granted an immediate D.C.M., HR Alexander, General, Commander-in-Chief, Allied Central Mediterranean Force.”

It is possible that Guardsman Montgomery was the Guardsman named in another man’s citation:

Click here to read the medal recommendation of Guardsman Adamson

Quis Separabit

Sources: The Times; TNA