James Ockendon VC

Ockendon VC

James Ockendon VC, MM was born December 10, 1890 at 56 Albert Street, Landport one of nine children and went to St.Agatha's School. On 28 August 1917 he married Caroline Anne Green at St.Luke's Church, Southsea.

He joined the Royal Dublin Fusilier as a private in 1909 and landed with the 1st Battalion at 'V' Beach, Gallipoli on the 24th of April 1915. He won the Military Medal in August 1917 just before he won the V.C. on the 4th of October 1917 near Langemarck.

On 4 October 1917 east of Langemarck, Belgium, Sergeant Ockendon was acting as company sergeant-major. Seeing the platoon on the right held up by an enemy machine-gun, he immediately rushed the gun and captured it, killing the crew. He then led a section to the attack on a farm, where under very heavy fire he rushed forward and called on the garrison to surrender. As the enemy continued to fire on him he opened fire, killing four, whereupon the remaining 16 surrendered. At the time, he was 26 years old and a sergeant in the 1st Battalion, The Royal Dublin Fusiliers.

He recieved his Victoria Cross from King George V on the 5th of December 1917. In 1918 he recieved the Belgian Croix de Guerre and was discharged from the army on the 30th of April 1918.

He and his wife had four children and he worked as a crane driver in Portsmouth Dockyard. After his retirement he worked at No.3 Training Battalion, Royal Army Ordnance Corps, Hilsea.

He died on the 29th of August 1966 at 5 Yorke Street, Southsea, Hampshire. He was cremated on 1 September 1966 and his ashes scattered in the Garden of Remembrance at Porchester Crematorium. Portsmouth City Council named Ockendon Close in his honour.

Royal Dublin Fusiliers, awards and medals