Anders Lassen


Anders Lassen
Anders Lassen
Anders Lassen 1920-1945.jpg
Anders Frederik Emil Victor Schau Lassen
Born 22 September 1920(1920-09-22)
Copenhagen
Died 9 April 1945(1945-04-09) (aged 24)
Lake Comacchio
Buried at Agenta Gap war cemetery
Service/branch Flag of the British Army.svg, British Army
Years of service 1940–1945
Rank Major
Unit Special Air Service
Commands held Special Boat Squadron
Battles/wars Second World War
Awards Victoria Cross
Military Cross**
* indicates another award

Anders Frederik Emil Victor Schau Lassen VC, MC & Two Bars (22 September 1920 - 9 April 1945) was a Danish recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

Contents

History

Anders Lassen was the son of Emil Victor Schau Lassen and Suzanne Maria Signe Lassen, of Nyhavn, Copenhagen and a cousin of Axel von dem Bussche, who in 1943 unsuccessfully tried to kill Adolf Hitler. .[1] Serving in the Danish Merchant Navy, he came to the United Kingdom shortly after the start of the Second World War where he joined the British Commandos in 1940, serving with No. 62 Commando (also known as the Small Scale Raiding Force) as a private. He was commissioned in the field and awarded an immediate Military Cross for his part in Operation Postmaster the capture of three Italian and German ships from the neutral Spanish island of Fernando Po now known as Bioko, in the Gulf of Guinea.[2]

No. 62 Commando was later absorbed into the Special Air Service in February 1944 and Lassen rose through the ranks to become a Major by October 1944. During his service he fought in North-West Europe, North Africa, Crete, the Aegean islands, mainland Greece, Yugoslavia and Italy. He was awarded a second and third bar to the Military Cross, the first dated 27 September 1943 and the seconded dated 15 February 1944.[3]

Victoria Cross

He was 24 years old, and a temporary major in the General List, when commanding the Special Boat Squadron, the following deed took place for which he was awarded the Victoria Cross.

The London Gazette of 4 September 1945, gives the following particulars:-

•The KING has been graciously pleased to approve the posthumous award of the Victoria Cross to: — Major (temporary) Anders Frederik Emil Victor Schau LASSEN, M.C. (234907), General List. In- Italy, on the night of 8/9 April 1945, Major Lassen was ordered to take out a patrol of one officer and seventeen other ranks to raid the north shore of Lake Comacchio. His tasks were to cause as many casualties and as much confusion as possible, to give the impression of a major landing, and to capture prisoners. ' No previous reconnaissance was possible, and the party found itself on a narrow road flanked on both sides by water. Preceded by two scouts, Major Lassen led his men along the road towards the town. They were challenged after approximately 500 yards from a position on the side of the road. An attempt to allay suspicion by answering that they were fishermen returning home failed, for when moving forward again to overpower the sentry, machinegun fire started from the position, and also from two other blockhouses to the rear. Major Lassen himself then attacked with grenades, and annihilated the first position containing four Germans and two machineguns. Ignoring the hail of bullets sweeping fire road from three enemy positions, an additional one having come into action from 300 yards down the road, he raced forward to engage the second position under covering fire from the remainder of the force. Throwing in- more grenades he silenced this position which was then overrun by his patrol. Two enemy were killed, two captured and two more machine-guns silenced. By this time the force had suffered casualties and its fire power was very considerably reduced. Still under a heavy cone of fire Major Lassen rallied and reorganised his force and brought his fire to bear on the third position. Moving forward himself he flung in more grenades which produced a cry of " Kamerad ". He then went forward to within three or four yards of the position to order the enemy outside, and to take their surrender. Whilst shouting to them to come out he was hit by a burst of spandau fire from the left of the position and he fell mortally wounded, but even whilst falling he flung a grenade, wounding some of the occupants, and enabling his patrol to dash in and capture this final position. Major Lassen refused to be evacuated as he said it would impede the withdrawal and endanger further lives, and as ammunition was nearly exhausted the force had to withdraw. By his magnificent leadership and complete disregard for his personal safety, Major Lassen had, in the face of overwhelming superiority, achieved his objects. Three positions were wiped out, accounting for six machine guns, killing eight and wounding others of the enemy, and two prisoners were taken. The high sense of devotion to duty and the esteem in which he was held by the men he led, added to his own magnificent courage, enabled Major Lassen to carry out all the tasks he had been given with complete success.[4]

Lassen is buried at the Argenta Gap war cemetery grave II, E, 11.[1]

The medal

His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Museum of Danish Resistance (Frihedsmuseet) in Copenhagen, Denmark. He was also the recipient of the King Christian X Memorial Medal, the Military Cross and two Bars, The Greek War Cross, The 1939-45 Star, The Africa Star, The Italy Star, The Defence Medal and The War Medal.[5] .

Further reading

References

Notes
Bibliography
  • Richards, Brooks; Foot, M R D (2002). Clandestine Sea Operations to Brittany: 1940 - 1944. Routledge. ISBN 0714653160. 

External links


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Lassen — (German verb to let ) may mean:* Lassen Peak, a volcano in Lassen Volcanic National Park * Lassen County, California, near the national park * USS Lassen (DDG 82), a US destroyer * Anders Lassen, Danish recipient of the British Victoria Cross *… …   Wikipedia

  • Anders (Hohlbein) — anders ist ein Zyklus von vier Fantasy Romanen des deutschen Autorenpaares Wolfgang und Heike Hohlbein, die zwischen Juni und Oktober 2004 erschienen sind. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Handlung 1.1 Die tote Stadt 1.2 Im dunklen Land 1.3 Der Thron …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Anders - Die tote Stadt — anders ist ein Zyklus von vier Fantasy Romanen des deutschen Autorenpaares Wolfgang und Heike Hohlbein, die zwischen Juni und Oktober 2004 erschienen sind. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Handlung 1.1 Die tote Stadt 1.2 Im dunklen Land 1.3 Der Thron …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Anders – Die tote Stadt — anders ist ein Zyklus von vier Fantasy Romanen des deutschen Autorenpaares Wolfgang und Heike Hohlbein, die zwischen Juni und Oktober 2004 erschienen sind. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Handlung 1.1 Die tote Stadt 1.2 Im dunklen Land 1.3 Der Thron …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • anders (Hohlbein) — anders ist ein Zyklus von vier Fantasy Romanen des deutschen Autorenpaares Wolfgang und Heike Hohlbein, die zwischen Juni und Oktober 2004 erschienen sind. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Handlung 1.1 Die tote Stadt 1.2 Im dunklen Land …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Anders Askevold — Anders Monsen Askevold (* 25. Dezember 1834 in Sunnfjord; † 22. Oktober 1900 in Düsseldorf) war ein norwegischer Landschaftsmaler. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben 2 Werk 3 Werkbeispiele …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Anders Södergren — Nation Schweden …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Anders als sonst in Menschenköpfen malt sich in diesem Kopf die Welt —   Voll bewundernder Anerkennung spricht Philipp II., König von Spanien, in Schillers Drama »Don Karlos« (III, 10) diese Worte über den ihm rebellisch gegenübertretenden Idealisten, den Malteserritter Marquis von Posa. Werden diese Worte heute… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Lassen (2) — 2. Lassen, verb. irreg. welches in der Conjugation mit dem vorigen überein kommt, und am häufigsten als ein Neutrum, mit dem Hülfsworte haben, zuweilen aber auch als ein Activum gebraucht wird. Es ist von einem sehr weiten Umfange des Gebrauches …   Grammatisch-kritisches Wörterbuch der Hochdeutschen Mundart

  • Günther Anders — (* 12. Juli 1902 als Günther Siegmund Stern in Breslau; † 17. Dezember 1992 in Wien) war ein deutsch österreichischer Sozialphilosoph und Schriftsteller. Anders beschäftigte sich mit den technischen und ethischen Herausforderungen der Gegenwart… …   Deutsch Wikipedia