Regiment/Service: East Surrey Regiment, 9th Bn.
Honors: D S O
Son of Col. Mottet de la Fontaine, Indian Army.
Henry Victor Mottet de la Fontaine was born on 2 December 1872, the son of Colonel of Mottet de la Fontaine, Madras Army. He was commissioned into the East Surrey Regiment as a 2nd Lieutenant on 25 February 1893; promoted Lieutenant, 8 February 1895; Captain, 9 December 1901; and Major, 21 June 1911. He served during the Boer War, being slightly wounded at Venterspruit on 6 September 1901, whilst serving with the 2nd Battalion, East Surrey Regiment (26th Mounted Infantry), twice mentioned in despatches.
During the First War he was made a Lieutenant-Colonel on 19 July 1915, and given command of the 9th Battalion, East Surrey Regiment the following year, being mentioned in despatches and awarded the D.S.O. London Gazette 1 January 1917. Lieutenant-Colonel de la Fontaine was killed in action in the area of Klein Zillebeke on 5 August 1917, at the age of 44, and is buried at Reninghelst New Military Cemetery, Poperinge, Belgium.
The following is extracted from his obituary notice, published in The Times, 24 August 1917: ‘...He served through the South African War and was twice M.I.D., and was twice, at least, recommended for reward. He was wounded on one occasion when rescuing a severely wounded brother officer under close rifle fire. In the present war... he obtained permission to leave the staff which he commanded with signal gallantry and devotion until killed at it’s head. His battalion was nearly destroyed in making successive attacks, in the last of which he was dangerously wounded.’