Friday, January 8, 2010

Soldier escapes alive as he rushes into enemy fire to help stranded comrades

A British soldier escaped with his life after he rushed into the line of enemy fire to help two stranded comrades.

Serjeant Jonpaul Greenwood, of 3rd Battalion The Rifles, was pulling his men back from insurgent lines after a day of heavy fighting.

When two of his soldiers became stuck with a quad bike in a wadi, he turned back, running about 75 metres with bullets flying around him, and picking up a general purpose machine gun(GPMG) to return fire.

The incident came after a hours of intense fighting in which his platoon had already been surrounded and pinned down by the Taliban.

The 30-year-old, from Rothwell in Leeds, said "Luck was on our side today".

"Some of the rounds that were coming in were very close," he said.

"The only thing that was going through my head was getting the blokes out of the killing area.

"You don't really think about yourself, you just think about the men you command and making sure you get them all back in one piece.''

Sjt Greenwood and his platoon were on operation north of Forward Operating Base (FOB) Zeebrugge at Kajaki dam in the north of Helmand province.

The men were giving support to an IED (improvised explosive device) disposal team when they came under attack from multiple locations.

"(The bullets were) coming very close to hitting me and my men on the ground,'' Sjt Greenwood said.

The battle lasted between two and three hours, and the platoon started to withdraw using smoke as cover.

"I looked around and one of my blokes driving the quad had got stuck in the wadi. I ran back under fire to get back to the quad", Sjt Green Wood said.

He took one of his men back with him to assist, and another joined them to direct mortar fire onto the enemy.

Sjt Greenwood took one of his men back with him to assist, and another joined them to direct mortar fire onto the enemy.

The men were able to free the quad and make a fighting withdrawal.

Sjt Greenwood said he would do the same thing again to save one of his men in trouble.

Major Mike Lynch, Officer Commanding C Company, said: ''There is no doubt in my mind that Serjeant Greenwood's command of his men today under fire was outstanding.

"He remained cool under pressure and under fire throughout, providing key support for a very important operation.

"His selfless commitment when they were withdrawing saw him returning to troops who were pinned down by fire and take control of the incident itself.

"He was very heroic in returning into the enemy's killing area to assist with the extraction of key equipment and personnel."


  1. A big Well Done to all those guys.

  2. Good for you. all people have a reason for being in certain places in life. and that was jonpauls.
    top draw mate.well done. ex RE

  3. Unlike this treacherous government you have my undying respect. Keep up the good work, as we support you every step of the way.

  4. Words actually fail me but I am so, so proud of you and all your colleagues. Bless you and keep you safe

  5. Well done goes to show the courage and commitment of our boys and girls.Take not Mr Gorden Brown show the same to our brave lads while they are out there and when they come home.

  6. Mcflabb,
    Yet again the boys in Black and Green show who really are the Dog's Bo**ocks. Lads from the bottom of our hearts we are so proud of everyone of you, come home safe and keep up the great work.
    X3RGJ ACoy 2plt

  7. My support and respect for you guys in unwavering - I cannot say the same for Brown's government - you deserve a lot better.

  8. Heroes one and all. We are all so proud of you back home and never cease to be amazed at what you are able to achieve, despite having a total fuckwit as the Defence Secretary.

    God speed to you all.

  9. You have my support all the way, I can only tell you how disgusted I am with the way the government has treated people like you.

  10. Well done my friend,we are renowend for being thinking riflemen and you have just proved it.Have a safe remainder of the tour.

  11. What a truely outstanding report of how brave our boys are and how they look after each other....lets get stories like this published in the Media for all to see, ther is hardly ever any feel good stories published, it's always the sad reports hitting the front pages and much as they are very very important reports like this are needed to help get public support for our brave troops

  12. Well done JP, u have proved yet again the tenacity of the Rfn, as the old saying goes, ' when the going gets tough the tough get going' well done mate. And a big well done to the lads that were with you in the contact and for helping out there mates in the time of need. Graham Simmo Simpson

  13. Well done lad. Keep it going.

    Greenjacket. Swift and Bold.