Lieutenant (Acting Captain) Eric C. T. Wilson, the East Surrey Regiment, attached Somaliland Camel Corps, was awarded the V.C. on Oct. 12, 1940, for conspicuous gallantry in Somaliland. The official account states that Captain Wilson was in command of machine-gun posts manned by Somali soldiers in the key position of Observation Hill, a defended post in the defensive organization of the Tug Argan Gap in British Somaliland.
The enemy attacked Observation Hill on August 11, 1940. Captain Wilson and Somali gunners under his command beat off the attack and opened fire on the enemy troops attacking Mill Hill, another post within his range.l He inflicted such heavy casualties that the enemy, determined to put his guns out of action, brought up a pack battery to within the loopholes of his defences, which, bursting within the post, wounded Captain Wilson severely in the right shoulder and in the left eye, several of his team being also wounded. His guns were blown off their stands, but he repaired and replaced them and, regardless of his wounds, carried on, while his Somali sergeant was killed beside him.
On August 12 and 14 the enemy again concentrated field artillery fire on Captain Wilson's guns, but he continued, with his wounds untended, to man them. On august 14, two of his machine-gun posts were blown to pieces, yet Captain Wilson, now suffering from malaria in addition to his wounds, still kept his own post in action. The enemy finally overran the post at 5 p.m. on August 15, when Captain Wilson was taken prisoner.