Lt. Col. Pelly

Lieutenant Colonel Raymond T. Pelly
Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry

Pelly always was a nervous temperament and the trenches came harder on him than on some others but you are quite wrong in imagining he is not full of courage for I know him to be. And at Frise when H.Q. was shelled he absolutely refused to go into the cellars until the last servant had taken to his hiding place.

(Agar Adamson to wife, 2 Jan 1916)

Raymond Theodore Pelly was born on 30 July 1881 in Woodford England. He served with the Royal North Lancashire Regiment from 1900 to 1914. As a member of the Governor General of Canada’s staff, in August 1914, he enlisted as a major with PPCLI under Colonel Francis Farquhar, who was killed by a sniper in March 1915.

Pelly commanded the regiment from mid-May 1915 until Farquhar’s replacement, Lieutenant Colonel Buller, recovered from his injuries and resumed his post in December 1915. Pelly later transferred to the 8th Battalion, Royal Irish Regiment in the Imperial Forces. He briefly assumed command of PPCLI in fall 1916 during the battle of the Somme. In October 1916, he received a promotion to brigadier general in charge of the 91st Brigade on the Italian Front.

By the end of the war, Pelly had won the Distinguished Service Order and Bar, the Italian Croce di Guerra and was mentioned in the dispatches seven times. The citation for an action on 27 October 1918 read:

He showed great judgement and coolness in personally superintending the final capture of this village from the banks of the Monticano, when they were under heavy artillery & machine gun fire the whole time. Throughout the whole operation he set a fine example to his brigade.

In 1942, Pelly became a Military Knight of Windsor. He died on 28 June 1952.



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