Lt Col D L A Gibbs DSO*

Lt Col D L A GibbsCommanded 1/6th Bn The Queen's Royal Regiment from January 1942 to 26th October 1942 when he was taken prisoner of war and commanded the 1st Battalion from January 1947 to September 1948.

Denis Lucius Alban Gibbs was born on 15th October 1905 and educated at the RMC Sandhurst where he was an under officer and a soccer blue. He was commissioned in The Queen's Royal Regiment in February 1926 and joined the 2nd Battalion with whom he served in India, Sudan and England until 1929 when he went to the Depot as adjutant.

After this he rejoined the 2nd Battalion, attended the Staff College and then held various staff appointments and served in France where he was Mentioned in Despatches in 1940. In January 1942 he was appointed to command the 1/6th Battalion. Later that year the Battalion together with the rest of 44th Division went to the Middle East and during the Battle of El Alamein he was taken prisoner of war on 26th October 1942. For his fine leadership of the Battalion he was awarded the DSO and Mentioned in Despatches.

In 1943 he escaped from a POW Camp in Italy and for 53 days led a party of escaped prisoners of war 625 miles down enemy occupied Italy until the British Lines were reached. He later commanded 2nd Bn The Royal Warwickshire Regiment in Normandy and was awarded a bar to the DSO.

He commanded 1st Bn The Queen's Royal Regiment from January 1947 in Singapore until amalgamation with the 2nd Battalion in Berlin in September 1948.

His last appointment was Commandant of Eaton Hall Officers Cadet School. In the 1930s he fenced (epee) for the Regiment and the Army.

He retired from the Army on 18th October 1950.

He died on 27th April 1984.

For obituary see The Queen's Royal Surrey Regimental Association Newsletter No. 36 November 1984 page 18.


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