3 July 1940: Maltese Gunner Earns Medal for Bravery

03 Jul

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Military Medal

Military Medal

A gunner with the King’s Own Malta Regiment is to be recommended for a Military Medal for his actions during an air raid today.  Corporal Arthur Kitney, of 3rd Bn KOMR was manning a twin Lewis gun at Hal Far when the aerodrome was subjected to a low level attack by enemy aircraft.  Cpl Kitney was hit when the raiders dropped bombs over his gun position and strafed the area with machine gun fire.  Despite his injuries he remained in position manning his gun against the enemy until the raid was over.  Recognising his actions, his senior officers decided to recommend him for the Military Medal, which is awarded for bravery in battle on land. 


From:  War Office                       To: Gov C in C Malta; GOC Commanding Hong Kong & Malaya

Efforts are being made to collect a force of French officers and soldiers who volunteer to go on with the war either as British nationals or as French.  This force under General de Gaulle may play an important part in operations outside the Mediterranean.  Do not repeat not therefore on any account discourage owing to considerations local to your own command the rallying of good men to our cause.


Weather  Fine. 

0945-1025 hrs  Air raid alert.  Two enemy formations fly over the Island but no bombs are dropped. Five aircraft are seen passing over Luqa.  Several Ack Ack positions open fire until Malta fighters arrive.  They attack one enemy SM79, which breaks up in the air and falls into the sea south of Delimara.  Five of the crew are observed parachuting down towards the sea several miles off shore but are not found by rescue craft from Malta.  As one of the Hurricane fighters returns to the aerodrome he is surprised by an enemy fighter which attacks.  The Hurricane crashes on landing and is a write-off.  The pilot is unhurt.

1022 hrs  A destroyer leaves Grand Harbour.

1755-1830 hrs  Air raid alert.  A formation of three enemy aircraft approaches the Island and drop bombs near a destroyer off the west coast.  No damage is done.   

1830 hrs  Signalling is reported in the Rabat area.


AIR HQ  Aircraft casualties  One Hurricane.  0445 hrs  Anti-submarine and reconnaissance patrol by Swordfish: nothing to report. 

KALAFRANA  Two recruits medically examined for the RAF.

TA QALI  A mortar demonstration is conducted at Ta Qali, witnessed by the Governor and C in C, the General Officer Commanding and senior staff of the Malta Infantry Brigade.

2nd Bn DEVONSHIRE REGIMENT  Battalion and married families’ baggage is loaded onto SS Tweed for shipment to the UK.

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1 Comment

Posted by on July 3, 2015 in 1940, July 1940


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One response to “3 July 1940: Maltese Gunner Earns Medal for Bravery

  1. Stephen Kitney

    February 18, 2019 at 3:04 am

    Thanks for putting this online. Corporal Arthur Kitney is my grandfather. I was very happy to see the story of his bravery on the net. Cheers


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