ORD, Ord Ralph

Lieutenant, Ord Ralph ORD
Aged 21

10th Battalion, Rifle Brigade
Killed in Action on Wednesday, 18th September 1916

Ord Ralph Ord was born on 29th January 1895 in Mildenhall (Mildenhall Q1-1895 4A:887), son of George William and Edith Emil Lucy ORD (née HAWKINS)

1901 census...Aged 6, he was at 7 Cambridge Terrace, Dover with his uncle Reg.W. ORD [33] medical practitioner born Streatham,Surrey; aunt Evelyn M [29] born Castle Bromwich; their daughter Margaret E [15] and son Reginald [2] both born in Dover, and his mother Edith E.L. [36] born Streatham, Surrey. His father George W.ORD [37] a surgeon, born Streatham, Surrey, was at 58 Queen's Road, Richmond, Surrey with Ord's sister Doris.

1911 census...Aged 16 , he was at Eton College. His parents had moved to 58 Queen's Road, Richmond, Surrey with his sister Doris [23] born Mildenhall and brother Rupert [20]( a sub Lt in RN) born Mildenhall.

In his will the given address was 25 De La Warr Road, Bexhill, Sussex.

His entry in Du Ruvigny's Roll of Honour reads :-
ORD, ORD RALPH, Lieut.,10th (Service) Battn. The Rifle Brigade (The Prince Consort's Own), yr s of George William Ord, of 25, Dela Warr Road, Bexhill, M.R.C.S.,L.R.C.P., by his wife, Edith. dau.of Charles Frederick Hawkins: b. Mildenhall, co.Suffolk.29 Jan.1895: educ. Eastman's, Southsea: Eton College (Scholar) . where he won the Jelf Prize for Latin verse in 1913, being also a member of the O.T.C., and gaining a Scholarship at King's College, Cambridge: entered into residence in Jan.1914; applied for commission on the outbreak of war, and was gazetted 2nd Lieut.The Rifle Brigade 9 Sept.1914, being promoted Lieut. 3 Feb.1915: served with the Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders from the following July, having been appointed Bombing Officer; was invalided home in April 1916, and subsequently put on light duty; rejoined his battalion at the front 30.Oct., and was killed while leading his men in an attack before Les Boeufs 17 Sept.following. Buried to the south east of Les Beoufs. His adjutant wrote:"He had been given command of A Coy., and was leading them when he was shot. He was one of those splendid and plucky fellows it is almost impossible to replace, and we miss him in so many ways." While at Eton he had the rare distinction of being "sent up for play"; also rowed in the trial eights and played in the Wall game St. Andrew's Day 1913:unm."
["sent up for play" is a peculiar tradition at Eton.. A scholar could be directed to write out his copy of verses on "sent up" paper, and to take them to the Provost, with a prayer that his merit should be rewarded by the remission of the afternoon school on Saturday. One way of encouraging due diligence in study, earn a half day off!]

The 59th Brigade's attack on the trenches with the 11th KRR and 10th and 11th Bn Rifle Brigade in front of Les Boeufs was doomed from the start. They had to wait in the rain for the start from old communications trenches at right angle to the German line; the order was issued late and one company failed to get the message; the artillery had insufficient time to prepare a barrage plan and worse, had not enough time to get enough artillery ammunition forward to the guns.
At 6:30 pm the understrength battalions left their trenches. As there were no attacks to the left or to the right, all the German machine guns in range turned to shoot at them. A few KRRC men reached the German trench but Ord and the 10th Rifle Brigade were shot down in front of uncut wire. The rest of the men were pinned down in the mud and General Cavan called off the planned advance towards a third objective. Ord Ord was recorded as missing on 17th and has no known grave. CWGC records none of the battalion killed on the 17th September 1916 but 28, including Ord on the 18th, only five have known graves.

Ord Ord is commemorated on the Thiepval memorial, pier and face 16B/16C

click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details