6. A British Officer Saves the Day - Page 2 By Sgt. Carl H. Hulsman

When he got to the tank, he rapped five or six times with the flat of his stick on the flat top of the front portion of the tank's body. A man stuck his head, arms and chest out of the hatch in the tank's turret, and said, "Yeah?" The officer swung his stick around and pointed to the top of the ridge about three hundred yards to the left of and maybe five hundred yards to the rear of the tank, and asked, "See them gooks up on the ridge there?" (His language, not mine.)

I, the man in the tank, and just about everyone else who heard him looked in that direction. I could see a strange jeep like vehicle and a couple men. The tanker said, "Yeah." in a questioning tone of voice as if to add, "So what?" The officer then said, "If they're an FO (Forward Observer), they could bring a lot of heavy stuff down on us here. We're like sitting ducks in this traffic jam. Think you can neutralize them?" "No sweat," said the tanker as he dropped back down into his tank.

With the whirring sound of its electric motor, the turret swung around, bringing the muzzle of its gun to point in the direction of the vehicle on the ridge. The sound of a man's voice giving numbers could be heard from inside the tank. A couple more sounds and a clank, which I interpreted to be the loading of the gun. Some more short whirring sounds as the muzzle was elevated somewhat and final adjustments were made. When the voice said, "Fire," the gun gave a loud bang and recoiled. A couple seconds later there was a loud explosion up on the ridge and the debris of men and vehicle went flying through the air. To the tanker who reappeared through his hatch the officer said, "Thank you," and walked back in the direction from which he had come. The "jerk" had just possibly saved our lives. I was impressed by the tank crew's gunnery.