b. 1905 Burnham, Somerset. d. 12/11/1971 Johannesburg, South Africa.
DATE AND PLACE OF GC ACTION: 22/09/1941 English Channel.
He was 36 years old and serving in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve when his motor launch hit a mine, wounding him in the head and throwing him into the sea. Despite this, when he was rescued he went at once to save others. He saw a seaman some 100 yards away in the water, and swam to him through burning fuel. His gallant actions saved the seaman's life. He died in 1971 just 23 days after the announcement of the Albert Medal to George Cross exchange. His family declined the change.
After some five post-war years spent in salvage operations off Malta amd a spell in the film industry, the Gibbons family went to South Africa in 1954. John Gibbons practised as an irrigation engineer until his death in 1971. After his death, his widow scattered his ashes at sea, just outside the port of Ischia, as he had loved the islands from the time he served there during the War.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: STOLEN.
BURIAL PLACE: ASHES SCATTERED AT SEA OFF ISCHIA, MEDITTERANEAN.