Terence Otway

Terence Otway

15/06/1914 – 23/07/2006

(ID number) Matricule : n°63633

Terence Brandram Hastings Otway was born in Cairo, Egypt on 15th June 1914 at the American Hospital. 

In January 1933, Terence went to The Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst (No. 3 Company, New Buildings). He reached the rank of Sergeant and passed out 18th of 200. Although this gave him eligibility to join the Indian Army, he chose the British and, in August 1934, was commissioned into The 2nd Bn. The Royal Ulster Rifles, based at Gravesend.

In December1940, Terence was promoted to Major. 

In August1943, Terence transferred to The Parachute Regiment to become Second-in-Command of the 9th Battalion. In March 1944, he was promoted Lt-Colonel and took over as CO.

The invasion of Europe took place in June 1944 – The Normandy Landings. The 9th Bn. dropped on the night before to secure vital objectives, particularly to neutralise the Battery at Merville. The full story is told in the Appendices. Terence was awarded the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) for his outstanding leadership and the success of the 9th Bn against all odds. He was wounded in August and evacuated to hospital in Cardiff, after which he was classed as unfit for active service and posted as a Staff Officer to the War Office.

 In June 1949 he was invalided back to the UK and banned from further service in the East.

Since 1949, He started an import/export business specialising in toys and gifts with a shop in Knightsbridge.

During retirement, he continued to remain active particularly in areas relating to the welfare of soldiers and their widows, as well as historical aspects of The Parachute Regiment, especially in respect of monuments in Normandy, France. He became known as ‘Colonel X’ when fighting for the rights of serviceman’s’ widows and their pensions.

A bust sculpted by Vivienne Mallock, was inaugurated on the grounds of the Merville Battery on June 7, 1997 by himself, Raymond Trebouillet, head of the French Resistance during the war, and Olivier Paz, the Mayor. He was awarded of the Legion of Honour in 2001.

"We had to go forward or give up. But for the Parachute Regiment, give up is not an option."
Terence Otway
Lieutenant-Colonel of the 9th Batallion