THE PRO PATRIA PROJECT
TWHIGG John Martin
11706, Lieutenant Colonel, New Zealand Medical Corps

CITATION
Distinguished Service Order
Gazetted 26 December 1941, p7334
Lieutenant Colonel JM Twhigg, NZMC, for conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during operations in Crete between 20th May and 30th May 1941.  Owing to his individual effort many wounded who would otherwise have been left to become prisoners of war were able to be evacuated.  When the battle began, on 20th May, his Field Ambulance was serving the forward troops only 2.5 kilometers east of Maleme Aerodrome.  On two occasions the 5th Field Ambulance was surrounded by parachutists.  Later they were within range of mortars and machinegun fire.  In spite of all this, 130 casualties were held on the unit, treated by operation where necessary and when contact was regained at the end of 48 hours, evacuated by lorries.  It is no exaggeration to say that this was practically entirely due to the leadership, personal courage and resourcefulness of Lieutenant Colonel Twhigg.  Moreover his cheerfulness and never ceasing humour were an inspiration to his own personnel and to wounded alike.  During the ten days of action following 20th May, over 600 wounded passed through 5 Field Ambulance, all receiving efficient treatment owing to Lieutenant Colonel Twhigg’s efforts in obtaining dressing, plaster, food and transport

Mention in Despatches
Gazetted 26 December 1941, p7362

Mention in Despatches
Gazetted 13 February 1945, p916

AWARDS
Distinguished Service Order
1939-45 Star
Africa Star
Pacific Star
Defence Medal
War Medal 1939-45
       Mention in Despatches (2)
New Zealand War Service Medal
Efficiency Decoration

NOTES
Born 13 September 1900, Dunedin, New Zealand
Died 8 April 1970, Wellington, New Zealand