From medal recommendation:

“24th Guards Brigade, 1st British Division, 6 American Corps

2718497 Guardsman, Lance-Corporal Maurice Morris MORIARTY, 1st Battalion IRISH GUARDS

This Lance-Corporal was stretcher-bearer to No. 2 Company. 

During the night attack 29/30 January, 1944, the company suffered heavy casualties when it came up against a belt of defensive fire, laid by 8 enemy Machine guns in the narrow strip between the ANZIO-ALBANO road and the railway line running parallel to it.  Corporal MORIARTY worked tirelessly and unsparingly all night, dragging wounded men from under Machine gun fire with complete disregard for his own safety. 

During the preliminary artillery concentration and subsequent enemy night attack on night 3/4 February, this Corporal again showed himself completely fearless in attending to the wounded and taking them to positions of comparative safety.  After the attempt to form a strong point round the road, cutting and railway bridge had been abandoned, Corporal MORIARTY remained behind by the road, tending to the wounded, ignoring the shells and bullets which were now falling and flying directly up the road from enemy positions on the high ground on the other side of the ANZIO-ALBANO road.

Single-handed, under heavy fire, this Corporal collected up to a dozen wounded men and put them between the bank and some carriers.  The position was over-run by the enemy who ordered this Corporal to march off to the rear as a Prisoner of War.

This, Corporal MORIARTY refused to do, although threatened with a revolver, and had not a German soldier fortunately been wounded at this moment, he would probably have been shot.  He remained with the wounded all the rest of that day and night and the following day, refusing to leave our wounded, although the whole position was subjected to heavy and accurate shelling by our 25-pounders and medium guns. 

The following night, with remarkable resource and initiative, he seized the opportunity to load the wounded on to two carriers, and together with another man, drove them away suddenly in a successful dash for the SCOTS GUARDS lines. 

The tireless devotion of this Corporal to wounded comrades and his complete disregard of his own personal safety or the consequences to himself of his courageous actions are an exceptional example of gallantry, self-sacrifice and resource.

I strongly recommend Corporal MORIARTY for the immediate award of the D.C.M.

signed C.A. Montagu-Douglas-Scott, Lieut.-Colonel, Officer Commanding, 1st Battalion Irish Guards

Granted an Immediate D.C.M.

signed H.R. Alexander, General, Commander-in-Chief, Allied Central Mediterranean Force”

N.B. On the recommendation the spelling of Maurice has been corrected to Morris.

Lance-Corporal Moriarty’s name and citation appears in the publication Volunteers from Eire who have won Distinctions while serving with the British Forces. It states that he was born in DINGLE.

Lance Corporal MAURICE MORIARTY D.C.M., 2718497, 1st Bn., Irish Guards who died age 26 on 24 February 1944

Son of Maurice and Elizabeth Moriarty, of Dingle, Co. Kerry, Irish Republic; husband of Mary Moriarty, of Cricklewood, Middlesex.

Remembered with honour ANZIO WAR CEMETERY

Grave/Memorial Reference: I, N, 6.

From The Irish Independent, July 11, 1945:

MORIARTY - Cpl. Mossie Moriarty, 1st Batt., Irish Guards, awarded D.C.M. killed in action, Anzio Beachhead, Italy, on February 24, 1944, aged 26 years, son of Mr. and Mrs. Moriarty, Mall, Dingle; sadly missed. R.I.P.

Quis Separabit

Sources: CWGC; The Times

Photo: B. Sims;