Henry Wellesley, 6th Duke of Wellington

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The Duke of Wellington
Born (1912-07-14)14 July 1912
Died 16 September 1943(1943-09-16) (aged 31)
Tenure 11 December 1941 – 16 September 1943
Parents Arthur Wellesley, 5th Duke of Wellington
Lilian Coats

Henry Valerian George Wellesley, the 6th Duke of Wellington (14 July 1912 – 16 September 1943), styled Earl of Mornington between 1912 and 1934 and Marquess of Douro between 1934 and 1941, was a British peer.

Wellington was the son of Arthur Wellesley, the 5th Duke of Wellington [1] and the Hon. Lilian Maud Glen Coats, daughter of Lord Glentanar. His career in the military began with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant in 1935 in the Duke of Wellington's Regiment (West Riding).

He died, aged 31, on 16 September 1943 from wounds received in action while leading a group of Commandos. He is buried in the British Salerno War Cemetery, Bivio Pratole in the province of Salerno, Italy. At the time of his death he was a Captain in command of a Troop in No. 2 Commando, commanded by Lieutenant Colonel 'Mad' Jack Churchill.

Both No 2 and No 41 Commando Royal Marines were engaged at the Salerno landings. They switched from their initial battle area around Vietri sul Mare, west of Salerno, to a position two to three miles inland of Mercatello, then south east of Salerno. The Germans held and were strengthening three high-ground positions. During the daytime of 16 September, No 2 Commando moved back though a valley around the village of Piegolelle dubbed 'Pigoletti', which had been cleared the night before, intending to capture a hill at the far end referred to as 'Pimple Hill'. However, in the early hours the Germans had sent light forces back into the valley and also strengthened 'Pimple Hill'. On assaulting the hill two troops of commandos were exposed to well-positioned machine-gun fire. The Duke was among the fatalities: leading a charge against a machine-gun post he was hit by a sustained burst of Spandau fire. His helmet was holed in three or four places. He was buried close to the place where he was killed.[2]

As he died without issue, and was the only son of his father, he was succeeded in the peerage by his uncle, Lord Gerald Wellesley. His sister Anne succeeded him as 7th Duchess of Ciudad Rodrigo.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Websters (years of birth and death) retrieved 6 December 2010
  2. ^ Wallis, Canon John, With God's Blessing and a Green Beret, 1994, Firebird Books, Poole; p48

External links[edit]

Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Arthur Wellesley
Duke of Wellington
1941–1943
Succeeded by
Gerald Wellesley
Peerage of Ireland
Preceded by
Arthur Wellesley
Earl of Mornington
1941–1943
Succeeded by
Gerald Wellesley
Dutch nobility
Preceded by
Arthur Wellesley
Prince of Waterloo
1941–1943
Succeeded by
Gerald Wellesley
Spanish nobility
Preceded by
Arthur Wellesley
Duke of Ciudad Rodrigo
1941–1943
Succeeded by
Anne Rhys
Portuguese nobility
Preceded by
Arthur Wellesley
Duke of the Victory
1941–1943
Succeeded by
Gerald Wellesley