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   Lieutenant Francis St Leger Greer M.C.
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Dated added: 30/12/2015   Last updated: 15/01/2017
Personal Details
Regiment/Service: 2nd Battalion, Irish Guards (British Army)
Date Of Birth: 13/07/1894
Died: 01/02/1917 (Killed in Action)
Age: 22
Summary      
Francis St Leger Greer was the son of Capt. Joseph Henry and Mary Greer of Grange, Moy. He was born about 1894 at the Curragh, Co. Kildare. Francis was raised by his grandmother Agnes Isabella Greer in Moy, County Tyrone. He was educated at Eton. He gained the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in the service of the 16th Lancers. By February 1917, Frank Greer had been attached to the bombing section of the Irish Guards. Francis was awarded the Military Cross for conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. He led three platoons in the advance under very heavy fire. At one point in the advance he shot an enemy machine gunner at about 80 yards, silencing the gun and saving many casualties. Later, he did fine work consolidating the position won. Lieutenant Greer was serving with the 2nd Battalion of the he Irish Guards when he died on the 1st February 1917 aged 23.
Further Information
Francis St Leger Greer was the son of Capt. Joseph Henry and Mary Greer of Grange, Moy. He was born about 1894 at the Curragh, Co. Kildare. His father, Joseph Greer, was born on 9th February 1855 in the Grange, Moy, County Tyrone, Ireland
Francis was raised by his grandmother Agnes Isabella Greer in Moy, County Tyrone.
He was educated at Eton College, Windsor, Berkshire, England.
He gained the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in the service of the 16th Lancers.
At the beginning of the War Lieut. Greer entered a cavalry regiment, the 16th Lancers.
Sec Lieut. (on probation) Francis St Leger Greer transferred from the 16th (the Queen's) Lancers to the Irish Guards.
From the Tyrone Courier dated 9th December 1915:
Sec Lieut. (on probation) Francis St Leger Greer, who has been transferred from the 16th (the Queen's) Lancers to the Irish Guards, is the younger son of Captain J. H. Greer, of Grange, Moy, formerly of the Highland Light Infantry. His elder brother, Captain E. B. Greer, is adjutant of the 3rd (Reserve) Battalion Irish Guards.
By February 1917, Frank Greer had been attached to the bombing section of the Irish Guards.
From the Belfast Newsletter dated 15th November 1916: Military Cross
Second Lieutenant Francis St Leger Greer, Irish Guards, Special Reserve, second son of Captain J H Greer, late of the Highland Light Infantry, head of an old County Tyrone family.
‘For conspicuous gallantry in action. He led three platoons in the advance under very heavy fire. At one point in the advance he shot an enemy machine gunner at about 80 yards, silencing the gun and saving many casualties. Later, he did fine work consolidating the position won.’
He saw a good deal of active service, and was awarded the Military Cross for conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. He led three platoons in the advance under very heavy fire. At one point in the advance he shot an enemy machine gunner at about 80 yards, silencing the gun and saving many casualties. Later, he did fine work consolidating the position won.
According to an obituary in the Kildare Observer.-10 February 1917, Frank was 'a splendid type of Officer, and his loss will be keenly felt, not alone by his brother officers in the distinguished regiment to which he belonged, but by all in civil life who were acquainted with him.'
Lieutenant Greer was serving with the 2nd Battalion of the he Irish Guards when he died on the 1st February 1917, aged 23. He had been acting as brigade bombing instructor when a charge went off accidently.
From the Belfast Newsletter dated 6th February 1917:
Lieutenant Francis St Leger Greer, M.C., Irish Guards, killed in action, was a member of an old Ulster family which has been settled in the province since the seventeenth century. Born on 13th July 1894, he was the younger son of Captain Joseph H Greer, late Highland Light Infantry, of Grange, Moy, County Tyrone, now resident at and Curragh Grange, The Curragh, County Kildare, and a grandson of General Henry Harper Greer, C.B., D.L., of the Grange, who died in 1888. At the beginning of the war he obtained a commission in the 8th Reserve Regiment of the Cavalry, which is affiliated to the 16th and 17th Lancers, but afterwards transferred to the Irish Guards, and lately has been attached to the bombing section. He was awarded the Military Cross last year for conspicuous gallantry in action, the announcement of the London Gazette stating that he led three platoons in an advance under very heavy fire. At one point in the advance he shot an enemy machine gunner at about eighty yards, silencing the gun and saving many casualties. Later he did fine work in consolidating the position won. His elder brother, Major Eric Beresford Greer, M.C., Irish Guards, had served with distinction in France, and had also been decorated for conspicuous bravery in the field. On the maternal side, Lieutenant Greer was a grandson of the late Major General George de la Poer Beresford, Indian Army, a kinsman of Lord Decies, the Chief Censor in Ireland.
From the Tyrone Courier dated 8 February 1917: Lieut. F St L Greer
Lieutenant Francis St Leger Greer, Irish Guards, killed in action, was the second son of Captain J H Greer, The Grange, Moy, and Curragh Grange, County Kildare. When the war broke out, he joined the 16th Lancers, from which he was transferred to the Guards, in which his brother Eric Beresford Greer, was serving. He qualified as a bombing officer and was awarded the Military Cross for gallantry and devotion last year. The deceased was twenty two years old.
From the Book: 'Blood and Thunder: The Boys of Eton College and the First World War' by Alexandra J Churchill
At the beginning of 1917, Eric's younger brother and fellow OE, 23 year old Frank was killed. He had been acting as brigade bombing instructor when a charge went off accidently.
Francis St. Leger Greer is buried in Heilly Station Cemetery, Mericourt-l'Abbe, Somme, France.
He was decorated with the award of the Military Cross (M.C.)
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Relevant Dungannon Area Locations
No Location Region Location Notes Longtitude Latitude
1 Grange, Moy Moy Census listing in Grange, Moy 54.46919 -6.707597
References and Links
No Link Reference Doc
1 1901 Census lists Francis Greer Lists Francis as age 6 at house 18.1 in Grange, Moy, Tyrone
2 Eric Beresford Greer Brother of Francis Greer
3 War Graves Photographic Project Photo of Francis Greer's gravestone can be purchased here
Dungannon District's War Dead Acknowledgements 2015-2018