LT. Richard Phylis Adrian Crisp
Updated: Mar 4, 2019
Name/Rank: Lieutenant Richard Phylis Adrian Crisp
Battalions: 93rd, 39th, 6th Reserve (Air Force)
Born/Current Town: Manchester, England/ Peterborough, Ontario
Known as in Letters by: Crisp
Lieutenant Richard Phylis Adrian Crisp, I'm fairly certain, is the very first soldier that Vincent mentions in his letters, simply as "Crisp". He is mentioned in the first letter written on July 6, 1916:
"Do not be annoyed but I have my hair clipped off. It looks all right and is coming in thick but not bristly. I had to have it cut off as Crisp said if I did he would and I promised but when I saw the mess he was, I almost backed down. Most of the others are getting theirs cut."
As you can see he mentions the short hair cut that are required by all of the new recruits, which he doesn't seem overly impressed by.
Crisp himself was born in Manchester England and at the time WWI was living in Peterborough. He joined the 93rd Battalion, the same one Vincent originally joined on December 9, 1915, about 6 months before Vincent did. As you can see from his Officer's Declaration below, the Medical Officer that signed off on his papers was Vincent's uncle, J.H. Eastwood, who signed off on many of the 93rd's Officer's papers.
When the 93rd was broken apart, like Vincent, Richard moved on to the 39th Battalion. Unlike Vincent though, he moved on to the 6th Reserve Battalion and joined the R.A.F. and was a pilot I believe.
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem that he ever made it to the 'big game' as Vincent liked to call it. During what I would assume is a practice flight between Beverley and Tadcaster in England on August 3, 1916 (I believe, reports are a bit confusing sometimes), it seems that he lost control of his plane and crashed to the ground. He suffered a pretty bad concussion which had him listed as "Dangerously Ill" in his hospital bed. In May of 1917 the Medical Board declared that he needed medical leave for at least a month and that he was deemed permanently unfit for the role of pilot or observer. A description of his injury can be seen below.
You can find all of his digitized papers here, and please let me know if there is anything you would like to add please let me know! Share this if you know any relatives or interested parties to this man.
Thank you for reading as always.