Victoria Cross : Private T Grady, 4th Regiment of Foot

Unit British Army
Place Europe: Ukraine, Crimea
Accession Number REL/11986.001
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Award
Physical description Bronze
Location Main Bld: Hall of Valour: Main Hall: Introduction Panel
Maker Hancocks
Place made United Kingdom: England, Greater London, London
Date made c 1857
Conflict Crimean War, 1853-1856

Victoria Cross. Engraved reverse suspender with recipient's details, and reverse cross with dates of award.

History / Summary

Sergeant Thomas Grady, born Cheddah, Galway, Ireland on 18 September 1835, enlisted in the 99th Foot on 18 June 1853 serving with them until 13 February 1854. This regiment was then serving in New South Wales and Grady was probably intended as a reinforcement to fill the place of one of the many soldiers who elected to remain as a soldier settlers in the colony rather than return to Britain.

He transferred to the 4th Regiment of Foot on 14 February 1854 serving with them until 21 September 1856 including service in the Crimean War. Grady emigrated to Australia as an assisted immigrant in 1865 and died near Melbourne on 18 May 1891.

As a Private he was awarded the Victoria Cross (VC) on 18 October 1854 for actions at Sailor's Battery at Sebastopol, Crimea. He also received a second recommendation for the Victoria Cross on 22 November 1854 and was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) in the Crimea, date and place unknown. Grady was recommended for the VC by Captain Lushington, Royal Navy. The citation for VC reads, 'For having, on the 18th October 1954, Volunteered to repair the Embrazures of the Sailor's Battery on the left Attack, and effected the same, with the assistance of one other Volunteer, under a very heavy fire from a line of batteries' (London Gazette 23 June 1857). Grady was recommended for the VC a second time. The date of both actions are engraved on the reverse of his cross but only one cross was awarded. The recommendation for second award reads, 'For gallant conduct on the 22nd November 1854, in the repulse of the Russian attack on the advanced Trench of the Left Attack, when on being severely wounded, he refused to quit the front, encouraging, by such determined bearing, the weak force engaged with the Enemy to maintain its position'.

Grady was discharged the service with a pension as a result of the wound received on 22 November 1854. His Victoria Cross was one of sixty-two VCs personally awarded by Queen Victoria at the first investiture held in Hyde Park, London, on 26 June 1857. Grady's DCM has not survived; it was ripped from his coat by a thief in Melbourne as he went to the Post Office to collect his pension.

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