Brigadier General upwards: how many deaths during WW1?

Discussion in 'Staff College and Staff Officers' started by Fray Bentos, Oct 17, 2012.

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  1. Can anyone confirm how many Brigadier Generals and above were KIA/DOW during WW1 please?

    I have an un-sourced list revealing the figure of 174 with the highest ranking that being of Lt General Mercer during the battle of Mount Sorrel near Ypres in 1916.

    Most people I speak to on this subject say they thought one was killed falling off his wine box. Pathetic statement I know but that seems to just about represent the feelings of most when discussing this subject.

    I personally run with the first relevation or there abouts.
  2. Don't if this is definitive but interesting none the less:

    British generals killed in WW1 - Other - Great War Forum

  3. You really need to get hold of the book Bloody Red Tabs. And the Great War Forum is a fantasic font of all knowledge, ask and they will be all over you.
  4. skid2

    skid2 LE Book Reviewer

    Try Mud blood and poppycock afaik there's a bit in there where senior officers were banned from the front because so many of them ended up casualties.
  5. I haven't read Bloody Red Tabs, so I wonder if their stats include those killed who were wearing acting rank of Brigadier and above, but who were included in official casualty lists under their substantive lower rank?
  6. Super stuff gents and thank you all!^^

    However, my mind is now full of amazing images concerning Generals being drowned!!
  7. The 174 number rings a bell, and having Brigadier includud as a General rank is what bumps it up.I researched it on line to shut an ex RTR Scotsman up whose favourite theme in the pub come Nov was always the 'Lions led by Donkeys' nonsense and then 'Why didn't they just pepper pot their way over, you ken, hard targetting, bloody Generals.'Anyway, the 174 number did give him pause for thought. As Bertie Wooster once said:I'ts never hard to differentiate between a Scotsman with a greivance and a ray of sunshine'
  8. The highest ranking General to be killed by enemy action was Field Marshal Lord Kitchener who drowned when HMS Hampshire struck a mine laid by the Germans outside the entrance to Scapa Flow.

    A second field marshal to die on active service is also the answer to the pub quiz question "who is the oldest VC winner to die on the Western Front?" FM Lord Roberts of Kandahar VC died after contracting pneumonia caught after refusing to wear a greatcoat to inspect units of the Indian Army in late 1914. They were shivering in tropical clothes and he refused to wear anything warmer as their inspecting officer. ( I also think he must be a candidate for the person who has seen most changes in his lifetime. Commissioned when the Duke of Wellington was C in C, wins his VC capturign a standard from Indian army mutineers, and serving long enough to have to think about armoured cars and aircraft. )

    I am pretty sure that the figures in Bloody Red Tabs relates to acting as well as substantial rank, as almost all the ranks were acting, and substantive Lieutenant or Captain acting Brigadier Bernard Freyberg VC is in the book as a casualty.
  9. One of those is presumably Edgar Cox, Brigadier General Intelligence at GHQ BEF, who drowned while swimming in Aug 18. From DNB: