GEARY, Benjamin Handley
4th Battalion, The East Surrey Regiment, British Army, First World War
Legion of Frontiersmen, Canadian Division (Ontario Provincial Command)
For most conspicuous bravery and determination on Hill 60, near Ypres, on April 20th and 21st, 1915, when he held the left crater with his platoon, some men of the Bedfordshire Regiment, and a few reinforcements who came up during the evening and night. The crater was first exposed to very heavy artillery fire which broke down the defences, and afterwards throughout the night to repeated bomb attacks which filled it with dead and wounded. Each attack was, however, repulsed, mainly owing to the splendid personal gallantry and example of 2nd Lt. Geary. At one time he used a rifle with great effect, at another threw hand grenades, and exposed himself with the entire disregard to danger in order to see by the light of flares where the enemy were coming on. In the intervals between the attacks he spent his whole time arranging for the ammunition supply and for reinforcements. He was severely wounded just before daylight on April 21. He was 23 years old, and a second lieutenant in the 4th Battalion, The East Surrey Regiment, British Army, attached to 1st Battalion during the First World War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC. On 20 and 21 April 1915 on Hill 60 near Ypres, Belgium, Second Lieutenant Geary led his men across exposed open ground swept by fierce enemy fire to join survivors of the Bedfordshire Regiment in a crater at the top of the hill, which he held against artillery and bomb attacks during the evening and night. Each attack was repulsed mainly owing to the fine example and personal gallantry of Second Lieutenant Geary. He deliberately exposed himself to enemy fire in order to see by the light of flares the whereabouts of the enemy. He was severely wounded early on 21 April.
At the start of World War II, he joined the Canadian Army, and achieved the rank of major. His grave and memorial are at St. Mark's Church Cemetery, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada.
His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Canadian War Museum, Ottawa, Canada
1914 Star and bar
British War Medal
Canadian War Service Medal
War Medal 1939-45
Canadian Confederation Medal
Born 29 June 1891, England
Died 26 May 1976, Ontario, Canada
Behobeho East Africa 1915 - 1917 Nyangao Kilimanjaro Great War 1917 Belgium 1914 -18
Legion of Frontiersmen, New Zealand Command