John Pericles Arthur DEIGHTON
Major John Deighton graduated from the Officer Cadet School on 19 December 1953. He served in various regimental and training appointments before he was posted to 4th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment in November 1963. He arrived in the Republic of Vietnam on 01 June 1968 as the Officer Commanding D Company.
During the succeeding eight months he commanded D Company with determination and vigour in eight major operations. His company conducted numerous successful ambushes and achieved an extremely high standard of patrolling. On a number of occasions D Company located enemy defensive positions and despite fierce resistance by the enemy, Major Deighton’s skill and calmness under fire resulted in his company achieving marked success.
In particular during Operation Merino in July 1968, Major Deighton showed professional ability and personal courage of a high order. In a series of contacts with the enemy he showed great tactical skill in the deployment of his platoons and in the siting of ambushes. Invariably and without thought for his personal safety, he placed his headquarters well forward near the leading platoons where he could best influence the outcome of any battle. His company inflicted significant casualties on the enemy and captured a number of bunker systems and valuable caches.
Major Deighton’s personal actions and endeavours throughout his service in Vietnam showed a tenacity of purpose, aggressive determination and excellent leadership on the battlefield and reflected great credit on himself and the Australian Army.