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 Nigel Gray Leakey

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Nigel Gray Leakey

  • Birth 1 Jan 1913 Nyeri, Kenya
  • Death 19 May 1941 Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples', Ethiopia
  • Burial Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya
  • Plot No known grave; name is listed at Column 37
  • Memorial ID 7769067

World War II Victoria Cross Recipient. He received the award posthumously on November 13, 1945 for his actions as a sergeant in the 1/6 Battalion, 22nd East African Brigade of the Kings African Rifles on May 19, 1941 at Kolito, Abyssinia (present-day Ethiopia) during the East Africa Campaign of World War II. Born in Kiganjo, Kenya to British parents, his father was a farmer. He received his secondary education in Kenya and later attended the Bromsgrove School in Bromsgrove, Worcester, England. After the outbreak of World War II in September 1939, he joined the King's African Rifles, a British East African colonial regiment. As a result of his heroism at Kolito, he was killed in action at the age of 28. His Victoria Cross citation reads: "On 19 May 1941, in World War II, at Kolito, Abyssinia [now Ethiopia], when the Allied forces had made a bridgehead against the strong Italian opposition, the enemy made a sudden counterattack with both light and medium tanks. In the face of withering fire, Sergeant Leakey leaped on top of one of the tanks, wrenched open the turret and shot all the crew except the driver, whom he forced to drive the tank to cover. Along with three others, he tried to repeat this with another tank, but just as he opened the turret, he was killed. The confusion and loss of armour Leakey caused was critical to the Italian defeat in the battle." His nephew, Arundell David Leaky became a lieutenant general in the British Army and his brother, Rea Leaky served as a major general in the British Army.

Bio by: William Bjornstad

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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 16 Aug 2003
  • Find A Grave Memorial 7769067
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Nigel Gray Leakey (1 Jan 1913–19 May 1941), Find A Grave Memorial no. 7769067, citing East Africa Memorial, Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya ; Maintained by Find A Grave .