Ryan, Antony Richard Biddulph (1918-1945)
Sherborne School, UK, Book of Remembrance for former pupils who died in the Second World War, 1939-1945.
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Credit: Sherborne School Archives, Abbey Road, Sherborne, Dorset, UK, DT9 3AP.
Details: Antony Richard Biddulph Ryan (1918-1945), born 29 September 1918, son of the Revd. William Richard Fenwick Ryan, R.N., and Hyacinth Ellen Gertrude Ryan, of Sturminster Marshall, Dorset.
Attended Little Appley School, Ryde, Isle of Wight.
Attended Sherborne School (Lyon House) September 1932-December 1936; 6th form; School Prefect; Head of House; 3rd XI cricket (1935-6); PT Instructor with Badge; Sergeant in OTC.
Royal Military College, Sandhurst.
WW2, Lieutenant, 2nd Battalion, Grenadier Guards.
Mentioned in despatches. Killed in action at Furstenau, Germany, on 9 April 1945, aged 26.
Sage War Cemetery, Niedersachsen, Germany, 6. C. 6. Inscription on his headstone: ‘UNTIIL THE DAY DAWN’ www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2074105/ryan,-anthony...
Sturminster Marshall War Memorial www.flickr.com/photos/13706945@N00/13341638605/in/photost...
Sherborne School: War Memorial Staircase; Book of Remembrance; Lyon House War Memorial.
Obituary, 'The Shirburnian', July 1945: 'Anthony Richard Biddulph Ryan (g, '32-'36), Lieutenant, Grenadier Guards, was Head of his House, and a useful cricketer, footballer and boxer, and but for an early illness would probably have been a Scholar. He was an Under Officer at Sandhurst, where he started the bayonet fighting at which he afterwards became an expert, was wounded in Flanders before Dunkirk and paid his last visit to Sherborne in 1941. He was the youngest Regular Adjutant in the Army in 1941-2, rose to Major in the R.A.C. and gave up his rank to make sure of active service with the Grenadiers. He was mentioned in Despatches last year and was killed in Germany in April of this year, a fine soldier, a great leader and a man of outstanding character and personality. A senior Officer who knew him well says, "I believe that, had he been spared, nothing could have held him back and he would have gone to the top of his profession."
We reprint the following from the "Times", C.G.L. writes: Lieutenant A.R.B. Ryan, Grenadier Guards, joined the battalion of The Sherwood Foresters which I commanded on September 3, 1939. Although he was still very young his record at Sandhurst and during two years' regular service had marked him out as an officer of the highest promise. For the next three years he served under me, as second in command of a company during the retreat through Belgium and France and during the final days at Dunkirk, then for a year as adjutant while we formed part of the 1st Armoured Division, and finally as squadron leader, when we became converted to an armoured car regiment. During these three years Tony Ryan developed into a brilliant regimental officer. Every on liked him - his men would do anything for him. He continued to act as squadron leader until just before D Day it was decided that this regiment should be broken up. There seemed no prospect of immediate active service. Fortunately the Grenadier Guards were able, and glad, to offer him a vacancy and he was soon posted to an armoured battalion in the Guards Armoured Division. Although this involved starting afresh as a troop leader he jumped at the chance, and within a few months he had won the affection and confidence of his new battalion. He was killed on April 9, going forward on foot to reconnoitre a strong point which was holding up the advance of his troop. But he had achieved the dual distinction of proving himself in battle a good Forester and a good Grenadier. There can surely be no prouder regimental record.'