Lacy Walter Yea

Lacy Walter Yea, eldest son of Sir William Walter Yea, 2nd baronet of Pyrland Hall near Taunton, was one of the heroes of the Crimean War. He commanded the Royal Fusiliers from August 1850 and took them to the Crimea where they fought under him at the Alma and Inkerman. Although he was a harsh CO in peacetime, in the difficult conditions faced by the regiment in the Crimea he was devoted to his men. When interviewed by Russell of the Times after the battle of the Alma he said "There, look there! That's all that remains of my poor Fusiliers! A Colour's lost, but thank God no Russians have it."

But at the Redan before Sevastopol in 18th June he was in command of a brigade of the Light Division, and was killed at the abattis. Russell wrote an account on the aftermath of the attack: 'I saw in one place two of our men, apart from the rest, with melancholy faces. "What are you waiting for?" said I. "To go out for the Colonel, sir," was the reply. "What colonel?" "Why, Colonel Yea, to be sure sir." said the good fellow, who was evidently surprised that there could be any other colonel in the world.' Gowing wrote that, 'He was as brave as a lion, and his familiar cry was, "Come on, men, follow me." ...With such men as Colonel Lacy Yea...our men would have gone through fire and water.' The photo, taken in the Crimea shows Adjutant James St Clair Hobson handing a piece of paper to Colonel Yea.

1808 Born on 20th May in Bristol.
1825 Ensign 37th Regiment. 6th Oct
1826 Lieutenant unattached. 19th Dec
1827 5th Foot. 13th Mar
1828 Royal Fusiliers. 13th Mar
1836 Captain. 30th Dec
1842 Major. 3rd June
1850 Lieutenant-Colonel. 9th Aug
1855 Killed at the Redan on 18th June.

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by Stephen Luscombe