Lieutenant David Robert Kelly


David Robert Kelly was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, on 10 June 1892.

When the war began he was living in Canada and working as an engineer. On 23 September 1914 he enlisted at Valcartier, Quebec, in the 1st Canadian Division Cavalry (19th Alberta Dragoons) (No.2005).

He embarked with his regiment for England on 4 October 1914 – just eleven days after he had enlisted – and arrived in France on 7 February the following year.

After a year in France he applied for a commission, initially nominating the 3/4 Battalion, Gordon Highlanders. After a period of officer training at Kildare, on 22 October 1916 Kelly was commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant in the North Irish Horse. Between late 1916 and early 1918 Kelly embarked for France, where he joined the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment in the field.

In February-March 1918 the regiment was dismounted and converted to a corps cyclist regiment. This left around a quarter of the officers and men of the regiment surplus to requirements. Between 1 and 13 March nine officers and 66 other ranks left the regiment, all but three of the latter reporting for duty at the Machine Gun Base Depot at Camiers. However following heavy losses in the German offensive at the end of March, most were attached as reinforcements to regular cavalry units of the 1st Cavalry Division. The war diary of the 9th (Queen's Royal) Lancers notes on 3 April that six officers of the North Irish Horse joined the regiment, one of those being 2nd Lieutenant Kelly.

Kelly was promoted to lieutenant on 22 April 1918.

On 15 February 1919 he was appointed for duty with the Army Signalling Service.

He relinquished his commission in the North Irish Horse on 6 May 1922.