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Farmer, Roland Davenport

Rank : Captain

Unit : 5th Bn, 1/5th Bn

Biography :

Home address given as Ashby-de-la-Zouch. Educated at Ashby Grammar School. Had served with in the Ashby Company 5th Bn The Leicestershire Regiment (TA) for several years before being commissioned 2Lt in that Battalion on 6.6.1913. His medal card indicates he was for a time a Lt in The Lincolnshire Regiment. He sailed to France with 1/5th Bn The Leicestershire Regiment, February 1915, as a Lt in C Company. He was a Captain and OC C Company when Killed in Action on 22.3.1916 at Vimy Ridge, aged 30. He is buried in Ecoivres Military Cemetery, Mont St. Eloy, Pas de Calais, France.
When he died his commanding officer Colonel C H Jones wrote to his mother, ’Your son was one of the coolest and bravest men that ever lived. I have seen him on many occasions under severe fire and nothing has ever disturbed him. He never flinched, never hesitated to go and do what he knew was right, without a thought for himself, only for the cause that he was upholding. We are all sorry. We feel his loss.“ J D Hills' book '1/5th Bn The Leicestershire Regiment in the Great War' in Chapter 6 (Page 92) relates: "Through it all [the German minewerfer shell attack] Captain Farmer walked calmly from post to post, cheering the garrison, and just before the end of the bombardment at 4 pm, made his way down the small communication trench towards his support platoon. Thence he went to call on B Company, but was caught on the way back by a mortar, which he probably could not see coming in the mist (for no one was more accurate in judging their flight than he), and was killed instantly, being blown out of the trnch and lost for several hours. Captain Farmer was perhaps the quietest, certainly the bravest, officer of his time, for he feared nothing, and nothing could shake his calm, while it was said of him that he was never angry and never despondent. When he was killed, C Company lost their leader, and every man his best friend, while the mess lost one who was the most cheerful comrade of every officer."

Date of Birth : c1885

Date of Death : 22.3.1916

Place of Death : Vimy Ridge, France

Civil Occupation : assistant clerk to the Ashby Board of Guardians

Period of Service : 1908-16

Conflicts : WW1

Places Served : France

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