This is one of the greatest losses experienced by the unit. It was one sorry episode. An adminstrative move early in the morning, turning into a bloodbath. It comprised of 1X Landrover, 1 X 3 tonner of engineers who were attached to 7th Rangers. The Engineers had completed some construction work at Camp Biawak. They had to return to Kuching. There were another two trucks of 7th Rangers. Most of the 7th Rangers personnel comprised of administrative soldiers. The order of movement was the Engineer's Landrover leading, the second being their truck, the third and fourth vehicle being the Ranger's trucks. The Enemy did not open fire on the lighter armed Engineers, they waited for the Ranger trucks to get into the killing area, once the trucks were inside the killing area the Enemy opened up with everything they had from prepared positions, the Rangers ( 20 soldiers) did not have a chance, those not killed outright were wounded, some badly. The Enemy force was 30-40 strong.
The Engineers who were less than a section strong (less than 10 men), made a wise decision by speeding off to a place called Titi Akar, where there was a troop of 1st Reconnaissance Regiment soldiers, to seek help. One very brave individual, who was a Lance Corporal from that troop along with his driver dashed off at first, on his own in his Ferret scout car. Soon to be followed by the rest of the troop. When the Enemy saw the approaching scout car speeding toward them with it's sole gun blazing, made a hasty withdrawal. He single handedly was responsible for saving the wounded who had put up a futile resistance, on the verge of being slaughtered. The enemy's priority at that time was to gather equipment and weapons. They took away almost all the weapons. With the arrival of that brave individual and his driver from the 1st Recce Regiment, the Enemy did not have the opportunity to finish/kill off the rest of the wounded soldiers. The news reached Battalion Headquarters, announcements were made throughout bars, theatres and the town to regroup the rest of 7th Rangers. Massive follow up operations were conducted, to track down the enmy. In the ensuing engagements with the Enemy, many of the Enemy were killed and also captured and the weapons recovered.This was aided by other friendly forces (Other units). It took a very long time to hunt and kill the enemy. The last of the weapons recovered was in 1986, almost 14 years ! See the names of the fallen, the Enemy and the ambush position.... This ambush happened on the 26th March 1972 along the Biawak / Lundu road. The cutting on the right shows the follow up operation conducted after the ambush. The enemy fired from prepared locations.
* Note. I would appreciate it greatly if someone would help me correctly identify the Lance Corporal and his driver from the Recce Regt, the Troop and Squadron.If there are any inaccuracies please contact me. The above incident was related to me by Lt Col Zulakpli Abdul Rahman, who was then a subaltern in 7th Rangers.