Poppy In memoriam Poppy

Private Robert Samuel Richmond



Robert Samuel Richmond was born on 25 March 1887 at Listearnan, Bawnboy, County Cavan, the sixth of nine children of farmer and sawyer William Richmond and his wife Bessie (nee Armstrong). By 1911 he was living at College Street, Cavan, with his mother, grandmother and three siblings, and working as a sawyer.

Richmond enlisted in the North Irish Horse at Cavan between 13 March and 2 April 1913 (No.821). He embarked for France with C Squadron on 20 August 1914, seeing action in the retreat from Mons and advance to the Aisne.

Between 1914 and 1916 Richmond returned home, either sick, wounded or injured, and on recovery reported for duty at the North Irish Horse reserve depot at Antrim. At the end of December 1916 he was one of forty North Irish Horsemen who transferred to the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (No.40661). They embarked for France on 9 January 1917 and were posted to the 10th Battalion, joining it at Ploegsteert Wood on the Ypres front.

On 21 January 1918 the 10th Battalion was disbanded. Richmond was transferred to the 9th Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (107 Brigade of the 36th (Ulster) Division).

From August to November 1918 the battalion saw much fighting in Belgium during the Advance to Victory offensive. On 20 October the 107 and 109 Brigades of the 36th (Ulster) Division forced their way across the Lys and pushed forward against stiff resistance. According to the 9th Battalion war diary for the day:

Battalion H.Qr. moved at 6.0 am 20th inst. across the river to a farm at C.19.d.9.9. In the meantime No.3 Coy. had pushed across and were in reserve. Companies advanced to the line of Road running through C.25. central and C.25.d.5.5. and pushed forward posts beyond this.

Their casualties for the operations in October were 55 killed, 177 wounded and 41 gassed. Private Richmond was one of those killed, on 20 October, during the advance near Spriete. After the war his body was recovered from its burial site south of Desselghem (map reference 29.C.20.d.9.0) and re-buried in the Harlebeke New British Cemetery, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium, grave VII.A.14. His gravestone inscription reads:

20th OCTOBER 1918 AGE 30



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