His fearlessness and presence encouraged his men in their desperate last stand. During his courageous defense, O'Brien was shot in the stomach and severely wounded, but even then he refused to be evacuated. Eventually with his pistol ammunition completely spent, the colonel mounted an emplaced Jeep and got on the pintle mounted M2 .50 cal BMG and continued fighting as the survivors of the 105th broke contact in order to prepare for a counter attack. When he was last seen alive, O’Brien was still holding his position dumping .50 cal death and destruction into the horde of Japanese warriors storming his position. When American forces pushed the Japanese back and eventually retook the position where they last saw their Battalion Commander they found an Empty .50 cal with brass and links strewn all around and O’Brien’s body, still holding a bloody Japanese officer’s sword, surrounded by the ruptured corpses of over 30 Japanese soldiers.
Completely out of ammo and surrounded by flames and smoke that quickly consumed his position with every second, Gurmukh Singh managed to signal the last update stating he was the last man alive at the post, he then signaled a request to leave his post and fight the enemy. His request was granted. The observers at Ft. Gulistan, looking through binoculars, last saw him fixing his bayonet to his rifle before charging through the flames to deny the enemy. Two days later, when British follow-on forces retook the outpost, they found Gurmukh Singh's burnt body surrounded by the corpses of over twenty Pashtun warriors punctured with bayonet wounds. He went 20:1 without any fucking ammo.
He was only twenty-three.
By the end of the day, only 2LT Maudet and 5 of his men remained standing. After telling the Mexicans to f*ck off with their third offer to surrender, the six remaining members of the 3rd Company shook hands, and as one committed themselves to one final bayonet charge out of the hacienda and across open ground towards the Mexican military. Two Legionnaires were killed in the volley, 2LT Maudet fell gravely wounded and the last 3 men were surrounded. Before they could be killed, the Executive Officer of the Mexican army who was dumbfounded by the ferocity and bravery of these soldiers, called his men off and convinced his commander, Colonel Fransisco De Paula Milán, to talk to the French fighters. Milán approached the three half-dead men and demanded their immediate surrender.
Corporal Phillipe Maine looked the commander in the eyes and countered with a demand for immediate freedom, safe passage home, with their wounded, their fallen officers, their weapons, and their Regimental Standard. Milán looked back at them stunned at the sheer balls of this Legionnaire and said, "What can I do to such men? No, these are not men, they are demons!" He granted their request, and the Legion withdrew from the field with their weapons, equipment, and most importantly their honor intact. The survivors never broke their promise to Danjou. They never surrendered.
Most famously, a reporter once asked Ganowicz what it felt like to kill a human being.
He replied: “I wouldn’t know, I’ve only ever killed Communists”