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Capt Francis Octavus Grenfell
Birth: Sep. 4, 1880
Death: May 24, 1915

World War I Victoria Cross Recipient. He was the first British officer to be awarded the Victoria Cross in World War I and received it on September 16, 1914 for his actions on August 24, 1914 while a captain in the 9th (Queen's Royal) Lancers of the British Army during the Action of Elouges at Andregnies, Belgium. Born one of fifteen children in Surrey, England, his grandfather was an admiral in the British Navy. An accomplished cricket player, he received his education at Eton College in Eton, Berkshire, England and joined the British Army in 1899 where he served as a 2nd lieutenant with the King's Royal Rifle Corps during the Second Boer War in South Africa. After the outbreak of World War I in July 1914, he was sent to France with the 9th Lancers and following the Battle of Mons, Belgium, his regiment charged a large body of unbroken German infantry in an effort to check their advance against the British Army's 5th Division and throw them into disarray. Upon the death of the senior officer, he took over and continued to lead them into a murderous fire until they were trapped and forced to retreat. He was wounded during the encounter and of the approximately 300 men who participated in the charge, only about 40 of them survived the ordeal. He then volunteered to assist in moving the field artillery guns belonging to the 119th Battery to safety, while enduring heavy gunfire. The following May he was killed in combat while commanding the left flank of the 9th Lancers near Hooge, Belgium during the Second Battle of Ypres. His Victoria Cross citation reads: "For gallantry in action against unbroken infantry at Andregnies, Belgium, on 24th August 1914, and for gallant conduct in assisting to save the guns of the 119th Battery, Royal Field Artillery, near Doubon the same day." His Victoria Cross is on display at the Regimental Museum of the 9th/12th Royal Lancers in the Derby Museum and Art Gallery, Derby, England. His twin brother, Riversdale Grenfell, was killed in action in September 1914, shortly after the outbreak of World War I. (bio by: William Bjornstad) 
 
Burial:
Vlamertinghe Military Cemetery
Ypres (Ieper)
Arrondissement Ieper
West Flanders (West-Vlaanderen), Belgium
Plot: II.B.14.
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Sep 10, 2004
Find A Grave Memorial# 9443687
Capt Francis Octavus Grenfell
Added by: Ruggero
 
Capt Francis Octavus Grenfell
Added by: Tim Reynolds
 
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Rest in peace old chap. Not the first officer to receive a VC in WW1, Captain Theodore Wright got one on the 23 August 1914 and Lieutenant Maurice Dease got one on the same day.
- derrick unwin
 Added: Mar. 25, 2016
Rest in peace
- Bruce Nuckowski
 Added: Jul. 26, 2015
Thank you for your courage and valor in time of battle. May you rest in peace.
- William Bjornstad
 Added: Jul. 21, 2015
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