Sher Bahadur Thapa

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Sher Bahadur Thapa
Victoria Cross Medal without Bar.png
Born 20 November 1921
Died 19 September 1944 (aged 22)
San Marino, Italy
Allegiance British India
Service/branch British Indian Army
Years of service 1942 - 1944
Rank Rifleman
Unit 1st Battalion, 9th Gurkha Rifles

World War II

Awards Victoria Cross

Sher Bahadur Thapa VC (20 November 1921 – 19 September 1944) was a Nepalese Gurkha 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.


He was enrolled on 20 November 1942 and was a 22 years old Rifleman in the 1st Battalion of the 9th Gurkha Rifles, in the British-Indian Army during World War II when the following deed took place at the Battle of San Marino, for which he was awarded the VC.[1]

Digest of Citation (reg No. 1137) reads:[2]

On 18/19 September 1944 at San Marino, Italy, when a company of the 9th Gurkha Rifles encountered bitter opposition from a German prepared position, Rifleman Sher Bahadur Thapa and his section commander, who was afterwards badly wounded, charged and silenced an enemy machine-gun. The rifleman then went on alone to the exposed part of a ridge where, ignoring a hail of bullets, he silenced more machine-guns, covered a withdrawal and rescued two wounded men before he was killed.
Killed in action on 19th September 1944 at San Marino.

His Victoria Cross is currently held by his regiment 9 Gorkha Rifles in India. He was a Thapa Chhetri of Khas origin and a son of Ramdhoj Thapa, a permanent resident of Ghalechap of Tanahu, Nepal.


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