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Medical Units of 2 NZEF in Middle East and Italy

4 Field Ambulance Leaves Thebes Area

4 Field Ambulance Leaves Thebes Area

Anzac Day, for the troops still remaining in Greece, was another day of most intense aerial activity. 6 Brigade had withdrawn the previous night from Thermopylae. To the enemy it must have appeared that the New Zealanders had vanished completely from the face of the earth. Throughout the day low-flying aircraft searched the valleys, diving to the attack with sirens wailing at the least sign of movement. Under cover of darkness, men and trucks emerged from their places of concealment, and the brigade moved back across the Corinth Canal to Miloi, some 30 miles to the south.

page 105

At the same time, 4 Field Ambulance also moved back across the Corinth Canal. Previously, on completing its move with 4 Brigade to the covering position at Thebes on 23 April, the New Zealand medical unit had occupied an area alongside 2/1 Australian Field Ambulance, 15 miles south of Thebes, taking elaborate precautions for concealment from the air so as not to give away the presence of a considerable concentration of troops in the area. As the Australian field ambulance was operating there, 4 Field Ambulance remained closed. An NCO and 16 men were detached to assist the Australian stretcher-bearers before 4 Field Ambulance withdrew on the night of 25-26 April. After crossing the Corinth Canal, the unit dispersed off the main road in an irrigation area.