Major General Bryan Webster CB, CBE
By Major Gos Home
I first met Bryan Webster in late May 1953 when I arrived to join the 1st Battalion The Royal Fusiliers in South Korea. We were both serving in A Company under Major Henry Hill, MC. Bryan was an experienced Regular officer two years older than I was as a National Service 2nd Lt. 1RF had been shifted temporarily into another Brigade because the Chinese were clearly determined to capture a range of hills, the central feature of which was called by the sinister name of The Hook.
The Hook was held by the Duke of Wellington's Regiment and the Royal Fusiliers were given the task of counter attacking should the Chinese be successful. Bryan was actually commanding the Anti Tank Platoon but as the enemy in this situation had no tanks it was effectively a rifle platoon. I on the other hand was a brand new platoon commander who was suddenly at war!
No one could have been kinder or more helpful than Bryan. Within a mere day A Company was standing by on a ridge behind The Hook along with the rest of the Battalion where we watched a massive assault on the Dukes which lasted all night. Mercifully the Dukes held the hill. We returned to our reserve camp for breakfast and were then told that A Company was to relieve the brave Dukes on the Hook itself. To my utter amazement Bryan and I were to hold the core part of the hill.
I was a total novice with an outstanding Sergeant, Harry Levy. Bryan then showed me his true character and his kindness as he regularly supported and encouraged me throughout the incredibly testing weeks as we led the restoration of the totally devastated Hill, dealt with its rebuilding, patrolling and leading exhausted Fusiliers, very few of whom had until then experienced warfare at this level. I will always be indebted to Bryan who in his cheerful way helped a novice to cope not least of all when my own deputy Sgt Levy was seriously wounded.
Bryan and I only soldiered together for the rest of my National Service but our friendship continued for the next 66 years .His highly successful career I had the privilege of observing and admiring and I have hugely valued the good fortune I had in meeting him when I was so young and in such a testing time. A truly wonderful man who will be greatly missed by his wonderful wife Liz and all their family.
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