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Waters, Richard Aitken

British (1801-present, Kingdom)


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Second World War (1939-1945)
Temporary Lieutenant
Royal Navy
Awarded on:
October 23rd, 1945
"Lieutenant Waters was ordered to recover a Seehunde Midget Submarine which had been stranded on a sandbank near Walcheren. The operation began on 13th January, 1945 and was completed on 5th February, 1945, under extremely difficult conditions. The submarine was practically buried in sand and it was impossible to remove the portside torpedo pistol until it was dug out a little. When he did attempt to remove the pistol Lieutenant Waters found that it had to be removed by hand, as it had jammed, and had to be started with a cold chisel and hammer. Later when it was possible to remove the starboard torpedo he again had to use a hammer, some two feet under freezing water, in order to recover the pistol from the torpedo which was not fully in the safe condition. He also had to remove the detonators and primers from this pistol by force, a most dangerous task, which took, three and a half hours. A slightly inaccurate blow with the hammer during any of these operations would have certainly resulted in an explosion which would probably have had fatal consequences, a fact of which Lieutenant Waters was fully aware.
This was the first Seehunde to be recovered so completely and this successful operation resulted in lull knowledge being obtained of the latest German midget submarine, which was a menace to our coastal and cross-channel shipping."
George Medal


  • - Third Supplement to The London Gazette Issue 37318 published on the 19 October 1945