As MAJOR Grant boarder the Lynx transport helicopter he thought to himself, the Lynx’s were an hour late what else was going to go wrong? The Brigadier had said the mission was simple, “deploy 2nd Company to defend a key part of the Auto Bahn and hold until relieved!” What the Brigadier had “simply lift out” was this section of the Auto Bahn allowed for east to west travel right into the Northern flank of I Corps! The Brigade Intel Officer told him what want was lift of 256th Guards Motorized Rifle Division after taking on the West German was reforming around its Tank Regiments and was expected to hit the Grants position in 12 hours.
The original plan gave Grant and His force would about two hours on ground, now an hour, before dust set in. This was all the time Grant and 2nd had to prepare thier position and make contact with the screening force “Raven”. He guessed they were elements of the Recce Squadron assigned to this area. They all seemed to be named Hussar or lancer.
The Brigadier had told Grant that the Division was sending support and that it should arrive by morning. Maj Grant thought about the Lynx being later and continued to wonder what else would go wrong!
On landing Maj Grant assigned Lieutenant Greens 4th Platoon to the North covering his lift flank, The Auto Bahn came straight from the North. He looked over to the Company Sergeant Major Hill, and said “The Road”. Hill replied “Sir” and off he went with an NCO and a few lads of fourth platoon.
Lieutenant Fitzroy and 5th Platoon were deployed to the South or right flank were the Auto Bahn turn to the West. Lieutenant De Lacy and 6th Platoon were deployed in forward center position with a wall to their North and East. To their South was a large parking lot with a few abandoned cars in it. The position was very exposed, Maj Gordon told De Lacy to fire two rounds from the Milan’s then withdraw through 4th platoon position once the battle started.
Maj Gordon placed the 2nd Company HQ in the middle of the Battle Position on the ridge overlooking 6th Platoon. Both the 4th and 5th Platoon received a GPMG from the HQ. CSM Hill was walking up from 5th Platoon position in the south when he ran into Maj Gordon coming from the North. Maj Gordon was about to ask a question when the CSM said “Sir, It’s taken care of.” “Sir, you need to go down for a few hours. That wasn’t a recommendation”
CSM Hill woke Maj Gordon around 0200, “Sir, LT Fitzroy is reporting a vehicle convoy coming from the South West.” The 2IC CPT Hill, “Sir, I just received a radio message from a LT Ponsonby requesting to enter the area” Maj Gordon told the 2IC to pass the message on and that CSM and he would meet at 5th Platoons location. He then looked to CSM, “No worries Sir the lads can open a hole to allow them thru”.
LT Ponsonby informed Gordon that he had his 14th Troop of the Scots Greys with three Chieftains, a Section of Blowpipe led by SGT Meyer and a Battery of M109 led by LT Ramsey. They had started with an FO, but he and his vehicle went missing about an hour ago.
LT Ponsonby then delivered the Good and a lot of bad news; The tanks had their full ammo load but petrol was down to an eighth for the Chieftains. They had the link up for Refuel on Move (ROM) but no one showed up! He had been told by the Regiment Commander that he had to be here before morning lite, no exception! LT Ramsey had only enough HE for two stand fire missions and one smoke. He did have enough illumination round to sustain 10 minutes of light. SGT Meyer section had eight rounds between them. The petrol situation for both Ramsey and Meyer was the same as 14th Troop.
Given all the “Good news” Gordon wanted the Battery to deploy in the clearing behind the forest East of 5th Platoon position and pass over what Petrol they could to 14th Troop.
He told LT Fitzroy to take SGT Meyers to the North woods of 5th platoons position. SGT Meyers was to choose his position with the plan to protect the battery and with clear fire to cover the parking lot.
After talking it over with the CSM and LT Ponsonby, Grant decided to place the 14th Troop in with 6th Platoon with priority to the North, but able to react to the South as required.
As he was walking back to HQ he kept thinking have I done everything, He heard the CSM, “Sir, Yes you have” He was looking at his watch,0420, when CPT Hulford came up “Sir, Raven made contact, expect the enemy to arrive within the next hour!” Gordon thought so much for 12 hours, more like eight! “Raven said they will enter our battle space from the South East and will set up behind the wall and the north of the building" Gordon thought how do they know our battle position?
Grant said to CPT Hulford "ensure everybody is aware of friendly to our South East”
“Sir, Raven is requesting to come in and reports that the armour formation is moving North and that a single company has moved south”
CPT tell the team that the attack is likely to come from the North with the next hour, Wake up 6th Platoon and 14th Troop! He looked at sir watch it was 0635. When was sunrise again, 0723?
10 Minutes late 6th Platoon report tanks and BMP’s to their North and AA vehicles to the East, 14th Troop confirm report to North.
CPT Hulford, remind De Lacy priority firer to AA vehicle and BMP’s and Ponsonby to the Tanks, on your count Mr. De Lacy! As De Lacy was counting down there were multiple explosion to the South East along the walls! Raven reported taking firer and returning same on the group of four BMP’s appeared from the East! Raven return firer resulting in one destroyed BMP before Raven moved off the wall to find cover among the parked vehicle’s to their East.
De Lacy counted down, three, two, one, FIRER, FIRER! Eight Milan’s teams and three chieftains fired as one! In the east two AA vehicles exploded, To the North multiple Tanks and BMPS blow up! After their second round the Chieftain’s pulled of the wall.
In the North the 1st Tank company continued to advance, the 2nd turn to engage the firer from the South along with the help of a few BMP’s. The Recon BMP began to move forward along the North boundary. In the Center the recon BMP’s moved to the Wall looking for the scorpions but only found 30mm rounds coming their direction! The last thing they would ever see!
LT De Lacy reported that he had lost four teams from the firer of Tanks and BMP’s and couldn’t withdraw as planned! He wasn’t going to leave the wounded. He was going to HOLD IN PLACE! Then the radio went dead!
LT Ponsonby chieftains advanced to the wall and began firing at the 2nd Tank Company now in one large traffic jam!
As the 1st Company advance East it was meet with Milan firer from the South (6th Platoon) and East, 4th Platoon had joined the fight! There were multiple explosions and vehicle’s running into each other, traffic jam increase!
LT Green reported that he was about to be over run! 1st Squad was gone after they got the attention combined firer of T-72 and BMPs! The 4th Platoon Laws and Carl G had made the BMPs pay dearly! The T-72 had driven thru the woods and turn south attacking along the ridge! LT Green called for the platoon to withdrawal to the high point on the ridge when help came attack a most unexpected direction! A flight of Lynx attack Helicopter from the North West took the tanks from the rear!
Raven 1 reported that Raven 2 had been taken out by a T-72 from the South East! They were moving from behind the wall and were heading North West toward Ponsonby! Ramsey heard the reported and fired a smoke mission to split the battle field and cover Ponsonby rear!
Ponsonby heard the report but could not abandon 4th Platoon, He and the wing shifted East to engage the T-72 from the rear. At the same time Ponsonby had the Platoon Sergeant Chieftain remained on De Lacy wall engage the AA Vehicles.
Just then two T-72 of the southern Tank force went up! 5th Platoon Milan had seen thier fire and engaged!
LT Ponsonby called for the troop to move South East and engage the T-72 coming across the Parking lot! The troop was run on fumes. 14th Troop account for three more T-72, Raven 1 withdrew under the cover of 14th troops fire
CPT Hulford told Grant that there were two Harriers in bound but wouldn’t be able to engage until first light! Grant remember that Ramsey had said some they about Illumination rounds, Hulford contact Ramsey "I want the area behind the building to look like day now!" Grant Shifted the Lynx to attack that area from the South and the Harrier attack from the south east.
Raven 1 report that the South Tank force was completely destroyed. LT Green in the north reported what was lift of the Russian force was in retreat, and that he need medical help and was unable to handle any prisoner.
6th platoon Sergeant reported that LT DE Lacy had faced down a T-72 at point blank range, He won the quick draw but was a urgent evac , He was alive but had taken a Head wound.
Company Sergeant Major gathered up parts of 5th Platoon and the Blowpipes, and CPT Hulford call for immediate evacuation
The sun was rising in the East.
Raven 1 arrived at the Headquarters position with three wounded, Gordon directed him to the North LZ were the company had set up a casualty collection point.
Gordon asked which regiment he was part of? He couldn’t see a rank.
The reply was simple,
“The Regiment, Who Dares Wins!”
Three hours later the first elements of Princess Margaret’s Owen Glasgow & Ayrshire regiment Mech battle force arrived.