VC awarded to Lieutenant Frank Alexander de Pass, 34th Prince Albert Victor's Own Poona Horse, for his actions near Festubert, 1914
Frank de Pass (1887-1914) was commissioned into the Royal Horse Artillery in 1906 and transferred to the Poona Horse in 1909. In 1913 he was appointed Orderly Officer to Lieutenant General Sir Percy Lake, Chief of the General Staff in India.
On the outbreak of war in 1914 he embarked with his regiment for France, where he became the first Jewish recipient of the Victoria Cross (VC) and also the first Indian Army officer to win the award in World War One (1914-1918).
According to the 'The London Gazette', De Pass was awarded the VC on 18 February 1915, 'For conspicuous bravery near Festubert, on 24 November 1914, in entering a German sap and destroying a traverse in the face of the enemy's bombs; and for subsequently rescuing, under heavy fire, a wounded man who was lying exposed in the open'.
Lieutenant de Pass was killed on 25 November 1914 in a second attempt to capture the trench which had been re-occupied by German troops.
From a medal group including the 1914 Star, British War Medal 1914-20 and Allied Victory Medal 1914-19.
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National Army Museum, Focus Gallery: West Indian Soldier
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