b. 11/08/1850 Wanganui, NZ. d. between 04/08 and 28/12/1881 Amatola Forest, SA.
Henry Cecil Dudgeon D’Arcy (1850-1881) was born in Wanganui, New Zealand on 11th August 1850, the son of Major D’Arcy of the Cape Mounted Riflemen. Henry followed his father into the Cape Mounted Riflemen and served in the Zulu Wars with the Frontier Light Horse.
On 3rd July 1879, during the Battle of Ulundi, whilst a reconnaissance was going on, Captain D’Arcy went to the aid of Trooper Raubenheim of the Frontier Light Horse who had fallen from his horse as the troops were retiring. D’Arcy waited for the man to mount behind him with the enemy closing in. The horse then kicked them both off, and D’Arcy was hurt by the fall. He was now alone, but still tried to lift Raubenheim, who was dazed, on to the horse, and only mounted and rode off when he was completely exhausted. D’Arcy later argued that Edmund O’Toole who came to his aid, should also be awarded the Victoria Cross, having originally been ignored.
D’Arcy was gazetted for the VC on 9th October 1879, and he was presented with his medal in December 1879 by Sir Garnet Wolseley in Pretoria, South Africa. Shortly afterwards, D’Arcy was given his own squadron in the Cape Mounted Rifles for his services in Zululand. Sadly, D’Arcy came to a tragic end. In August 1881, whilst suffering from illness and delirium, he wandered into the Amatola Forest, and became lost. Although diligent searches were made for him, it was three months before his body was found, at the bottom of a cleft in a high krantz in the Perie Bush, Amatola Forest. He was buried in King William’s Town Cemetery, Cape Province. His medals are held by the D’Arcy family.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: HELD BY D'ARCY FAMILY.
BURIAL PLACE: EASTERN CAPE CEMETERY, KING WILLIAM'S TOWN, SA.
SECTION D GRAVE 32-33