December 20 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
An Army medic from north Norfolk who helped save the lives of six shot soldiers in Afghanistan, while under fire himself, has been given a bravery award.
Cpl David Overall dashed to help when a rogue Afghan national turned his gun on fellow peacekeeping soldiers at a patrol base.
He lay on the first casualty to protect him while shots rained down, and over the next half an hour managed to carry out first aid which saved six of the seven shot men.
Cpl Overall, 32, whose home town is Cromer, has now been awarded the Joint Commanders’ Commendation in the annual operational honours, for his bravery during the attack.
He serves with 3 Medical Regiment (63 Force Support Squadron) and was attached to 40 Commando Royal Marines in January when the Afghan National Army soldier turned his gun on soldiers serving with the International Security and Assistance Force, at a patrol base, said a Ministry of Defence spokesman.
“Despite coming under intense fire, he raced to the scene of the shooting to treat the wounded.
“As the senior medic there he worked for the next 30 minutes, while bullets rained down on the position, to stabilise and evacuate seven casualties, six of whom survived due to the life-saving treatment they received,” he added.
Cpl Overall said: “When I got there I placed myself on the first casualty while the fire was coming down so as to protect him, but then we took another six injuries.
“The training I had just took over on the day; I took command of the medical team and the casualty evacuation, while the Marines dealt with the incident.”
He joined the Army in 2006 in his quest to be a paramedic, having been told he did not have enough qualifications for the Norfolk ambulance service.
The career move was also partly sparked by the medical help his dad Philip - known locally as Biscuit - received when he suffered head injuries after an attack in Cornwall in 2000.
Cpl Overall, who is currently based at Fulwood Barracks in Lancashire, said: “I became a medic because I’m quite a caring person. I am very proud to receive the honour, it’s nice to get recognition for your work.”
Mum Julie Overall, who helps run the town’s Cottage pub where her husband is one of the partners, said: “I was upset and worried when David joined the Army, but I am proud of what he has achieved.”
Cpl Overall is a former pupil of Cromer High School, and Army cadet. He has also worked in the car parts, building and poultry trades and had a spell in his father’s fencing business.
It was the combat medical technician’s second tour of Afghanistan. He has also served in Iraq and Cyprus.