John Wallace Linton VC, DSO, DSC

John Wallace Linton (15/10/1905 – 23/03/1943) was posthumously awarded  the Victoria Cross while commanding HM Submarines.  (The convoy attack specified in the citation occurred off Libya on 28/29 May 1942) (

The Citation, recorded in the London Gazette of Supplement: 36028 Page :2329 reads:

“Commander John Wallace Linton, D.S.O., D.S.C., Royal Navy.
From the outbreak of War until H.M.S. Turbulent’s last patrol Commander Linton was constantly in command of submarines, and during that time inflicted great damage on the Enemy. He sank one Cruiser, one Destroyer, one U-boat, twenty-eight Supply Ships, some 100,000 tons in all, and destroyed three trains by gun-fire. In his last year he spent two hundred and fifty-four days at sea, submerged for nearly ‘half the time, and his ship was hunted thirteen times and had two hundred and fifty depth charges, aimed at her.
His many and brilliant successes were due to his constant activity and skill, and the daring which never failed him when there was an Enemy to be attacked. 
On one occasion, for instance, in H.M.S. Turbulent, he sighted a convoy of two Merchantmen
and two Destroyers in mist and moonlight. He worked round ahead of the ‘ convoy and dived to attack it as it passed through the moon’s rays. On bringing his sights to bear he found himself right ahead of a Destroyer. Yet he held his course till the Destroyer was almost on top of him, and, when his sights came on the convoy, he.fired. His great courage and determination were
rewarded. He sank one Merchantman and one Destroyer outright, and set the other ‘Merchantman on fire so that she blew up.”

On 6 May 1941 Lieutenant-Commander John Wallace Linton of HMS Pandora was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross:

“For courage and determination in sinking two Italian supply ships.”

On 15 September 1942 Commander John Wallace Linton, DSC, was appointed a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order:

“For courage and skill in successful submarine patrols in HMS Turbulent.”


He was killed in action in Maddalena Harbour, Italy, on 23 March 1943 and is commemorated on Portsmouth Naval Memorial panel 72 column 3

H.M. Submariner Turbulent was lost in March 1943, the circumstance of her loss are not known.   She is commemorated on the memorial at the  Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport.

© DRW 2017-2018. Created 27/02/2017

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