- Second World War (1939-1945)
- Acting Captain
- No.1 Commando, Combined Operations
- Awarded on:
- October 7th, 1943
- Awarded for:
- Operation Torch
In recognition of gallant and distinguished services in North Africa.
As an Acting Captain attached to No.1 Commando, he took part in the Allied invasion of North Africa, Operation Torch, in 1942. The task of 1 Commando was to turn the enemy's sea flank, cut their communications and force their withdrawal. Within 3 days they were in control of many strategic coastal roads. During one part of the operation, Turnbull was ordered to withdraw his section after a fierce engagement. To do this he had to lead his men, some of whom were wounded, through a curtain of intense fire. Having personally extricated one man and moved him to relative safety, he discovered that another was missing and went back, found him and brought him to cover. More than 20 soldiers were recommended for decorations and Turnbull was awarded the Military Cross.