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Royal Marine receives Conspicuous Gallantry Cross


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Hi Guys,

Found this which I thought might be of interest. This guy was a British Marine attached to the US Marines. The article doesn`t mention it, but does anyone know if the US gave him a bravery medal as well? Would he of also be entitled to the US medal for Iraq?

Anyway he`s the story....

Colour Sergeant Matthew Tomlinson receives the Conspicuous Gallantry Cross in the Operational Honours List announced on 24 March 2006.

Colour Sergeant Tomlinson was commanding a US Marine Corps assault force on the Euphrates River near Fallujah in November 2004 when they came under fire from a numerically superior and well-defended enemy position. His decision to turn his lead craft towards the attack created an element of surprise, which unhinged the enemy. He was first on the river bank and he engaged in close quarter battle, enabling his men to encircle the enemy.

When it became clear the insurgents were reinforcing themselves, Colour Sergeant Tomlinson called for fire support on the enemy Rocket Propelled Grenade position and he planned and led a decisive assault on the key enemy position. On realising his force was running low on ammunition, Colour Sergeant Tomlinson executed a safe withdrawal to the river bank where he personally provided cover fire to ensure his men safely boarded the boats. He also marked his position so that air support could counter strike at the enemy force. The citation reads:

"Colour Sergeant Tomlinson's sure, aggressive and decisive actions throughout saved the lives of many in his US Marine Corps patrol. He displayed courage, determination, and remarkable presence of mind throughout and his actions were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Royal Marines."

Matthew Tomlinson ("Tommo") was born in Bridport on 6 December 1966 and grew up in Street, Somerset where he attended Crispin School.

He joined the Royal Marines in June 1989 and trained as a landing craft specialist. The majority of his career to date has been spent as a small boat coxswain with operational tours in Northern Ireland, Zaire, the Congo, Sierra Leone and Hong Kong before the handover. He also served in Afghanistan on the operations against the Taliban.

From 2003 to 2005 Colour Sergeant Tomlinson served on exchange with the United States Marine Corps, Small Boat Company at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. During this time he deployed to Iraq to carry out operations on the Euphrates River around Fallujha.

Colour Sergeant Tomlinson is now serving with 1 Assault Group Royal Marines where he does research, development and trials on new landing craft and boats.

Married to Sharon they have 3 children, daughter Ellis and sons Harvey and Daniel-Brian.

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The article doesn`t mention it, but does anyone know if the US gave him a bravery medal as well? Would he of also be entitled to the US medal for Iraq?

I doubt it. British policy doesn't allow for the award of two decorations for the action. Prior to presenting a bravery award to this Marine the US would consult with the Brits who would then decline the offer.

The issue of a US medal for Iraq is probably unlikely in this case because the Brits are also in Iraq and have their own service medal for this campaign. If presented with one by the US he would not be able to wear it with his other medals but could keep it as a souvenir.

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I doubt it. British policy doesn't allow for the award of two decorations for the action. Prior to presenting a bravery award to this Marine the US would consult with the Brits who would then decline the offer.

The issue of a US medal for Iraq is probably unlikely in this case because the Brits are also in Iraq and have their own service medal for this campaign. If presented with one by the US he would not be able to wear it with his other medals but could keep it as a souvenir.

That stinks!! I cannot believe that the British govt would not allow the wear of a US decoration. I know of a British soldier who received a US Bronze Star for something...

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That stinks!! I cannot believe that the British govt would not allow the wear of a US decoration. I know of a British soldier who received a US Bronze Star for something...

I didn't say that the Brits "don't allow the wear of a US decoration" I said that they don't allow two decorations for the same event. The US routinely awards Bronze and Silver Stars to Allied forces and, at higher ranks, the Legion of Merit. If I were the Royal Marine I would prefer to be recognized by my own government and wear a medal that my Brit comrades in arms would recognize - and which is worn as my 'first' medal, rather than one that is not readily known and is tucked away, as a foreign award, at the end of my medal row.

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