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Dobie, David Theodore

Date of birth:
October 21st, 1912 (Tynemouth/Tyne and Wear, Great Britain)
Date of death:
December 12th, 1971
Service number:
British (1801-present, Kingdom)


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Second World War (1939-1945)
Temporary Major
Headquarters, 1st Parachute Brigade, 1st Airborne Division, British Army
Awarded on:
April 22nd, 1943
Awarded for:
Operation Torch
"in recognition of gallant and distinguished services in North Africa."
Distinguished Service Order (DSO)
Second World War (1939-1945)
Acting Lieutenant-Colonel
1st Parachute Battalion, 1st Parachute Brigade, 1st Airborne Division, British Army
Awarded on:
July 31st, 1945
Awarded for:
Operation Market Garden
For having distinguished himself in the fighting around Arnhem from September 17 to 25, by performing eminent acts of courage, tact and loyalty; having shown extraordinary inspiration to all during those glorious days.

Lieutenant-Colonel Dobie commanded 1st Parachute Battalion which dropped west of Arnhem on 17th September. During the advance on the town, the Battalion was ordered to move to the main Rhine Bridge where 2nd Parachute Battalion were hard pressed. From the evening of 17th September until early morning 19th September, Lieutenant-Colonel Dobie led his Battalion with the utmost dash and gallantry against intense opposition including Tanks. Heavy casualties were inflicted on the enemy but, by 0600 hrs 19th September, after continuous and bitter fighting, only forty men remained under this officer's command. Regardless of the hopeless odds, Lieutenant-Colonel Dobie continued to press forward until he himself was wounded and the remnants of his force overrun. Throughout this action, this officer displayed magnificent leadership and complete disregard for his own safety. He was taken prisoner but escaped from hospital and made his way 8 miles, through the German lines, to where he hoped to rejoin the remainder of the Division. When he found our troops had been withdrawn south of the Rhine, Lieutenant-Colonel Dobie contacted the Dutch Resistance Organisation. Later, when it became necessary to withdraw over one hundred Airborne Troops who were in hiding behind the German lines, this officer volunteered to cross the Rhine and Waal in order to plan the escape from the British side. He made this hazardous journey successfully, and was largely responsible for the brilliantly successful escape which followed. Throughout two days intense fighting and four weeks behind the German lines, Lieutenant-Colonel Dobie displayed the highest standard of courage, skill and leadership.
Royal decree no.29
Ridder vierde klasse der Militaire Willems Orde (MWO.4)