The Unknown Warriors

Stanley Hollis V.C

Stan Hollis , from North Yorkshire, was the one and only recipient of the Victoria Cross, awarded for bravery on D-Day, 6th June 1944. He was aged 31 at the time and landed on Gold Beach as part of the 4th Battalion, Green Howards. Earlier in the war he had been evacuated off the beaches at Dunkirk, then fought in the 8th Army as a desert rat in North Africa, he then went over to Sicily with his regiment and was wounded at Primosole Bridge. Just before the Sicily invasion he had been promoted to Company Sergeant Major.

 

A few months after D-Day he was wounded in the leg and evacuated back to Britain to receive medical care.

 

In the years following WWII he was landlord of a pub in North Ormesby, which he renamed The Green Howard, in honour of his regiment. He died in 1972.

 

VICTORIA CROSS CITATION

 

'In Normandy on 6 June 1944 Company Sergeant-Major Hollis went with his company commander to investigate two German pill-boxes which had been by-passed as the company moved inland from the beaches. "Hollis instantly rushed straight at the pillbox, firing his Sten gun into the first pill-box, He jumped on top of the pillbox, re-charged his magazine, threw a grenade in through the door and fired his Sten gun into it, killing two Germans and taking the remainder prisoners.

 

Later the same day C.S.M. Hollis pushed right forward to engage the field gun with a PIAT from a house at 50 yards range... He later found that two of his men had stayed behind in the house. In full view of, the enemy who were continually firing at him, he went forward alone to distract their attention from the other men. Under cover of his diversion, the two men were able to get back.

 

Wherever the fighting was heaviest he appeared, displaying the utmost gallantry. It was largely through his heroism and resource that the Company's objectives were gained and casualties were not heavier he saved the lives of many of his men.'