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Lieutenant Colonel GEOFFREY CHARLES TASKER KEYES

Service Number: 71081
Regiment & Unit/Ship

Royal Armoured Corps

Royal Scots Greys (2nd Dragoons)

Date of Death

Died 18 November 1941

Age 24 years old

Buried or commemorated at

BENGHAZI WAR CEMETERY

7. D. 5.

Libya

  • Secondary Unit, Regiment and No. 11 (Scottish) Commando
  • Country of Service United Kingdom
  • Awards Victoria Cross, Military Cross
  • Additional Info Awarded Croix de Guerre. Son of Admiral of the Fleet Roger John Brownlow Keyes, G.C.B., K.C.V.O., C.M:G., D.S.O., A.D.C., 1st Baron Keyes, and of Lady Keyes (nee Bowlby), of Buckingham.
  • Personal Inscription KILLED LEADING THE RAID ON GENERAL ROMMEL'S H.Q. SIDI RAFA. SON OF ADMIRAL OF THE FLEET THE LORD KEYES
  • Additional Citation note

    The citation in the London Gazette of the 19th June, 1942, gives the following details : Lieutenant-Colonel Keyes commanded a detachment of a force which landed some 250 miles behind the enemy lines, in North Africa, to attack Headquarters Base installations and communications. Lieutenant-Colonel Keyes deliberately selected the command of the party detailed to attack the residence and Headquarters of the General Officer commanding the German Forces in North Africa. This attack meant almost certain death for those who took part in it. The disposition of his detachment left him only one officer and a N.C.O. with whom to break into General Rommel's residence. On the night 17/18 November, 1941, he boldly led his party to the front door and demanded entrance. It was unfortunately necessary to shoot the sentry; the noise aroused the house, so that speed became of the first importance. Lieutenant-Colonel Keyes instinctively took the lead and emptied his revolver with great success into the first room. He then entered the second room but was mortally wounded almost immediately. By his fearless disregard of the dangers which he ran and of which he was fully aware, and by his magnificent leadership and outstanding gallantry Lieutenant Colonel Keyes set an example of supreme self-sacrifice and devotion to duty.

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Buried or commemorated at