Decorated for Cool Bravery
For his action in staying at his battery post when it was attacked by enemy air craft, and for shooting down one of the raiders, Gunner Stanley Alfred Joseph Martin, whose home is at Glenbow Road, Downham, has been awarded the Military Medal.
Aged 19, Gunner Martin was born at Southwark, and came to Downham with his parents 14 years ago. Before the war he was employed on the office staff of the “Illustrated London News,” and was also a member of the Territorial Army. He was called to the colours when war began. He was educated at Rangefield Junior School and Churchdown Senior School.
The following account of the exploit that earned Gunner Martin the coveted Military is taken from a recent issue of a London daily newspaper:-
“Diving low out of the gathering darkness enemy planes made a determined attack on A.A. battery positions in East Anglia.
Emplacements, sandbags, tents and huts were perforated, but 19 year old Gunner Stanley A. Martin, behind a light machine-gun, kept calm.
He withheld his fire until one of the attacking planes was close, and then poured into it a full drum of bullets, causing it to crash in the River Stour.”
Bromley & Times District Times, 3rd January 1941, page 5