Brigadier Cheape

Brigadier General Ronald Cheape was the son of Colonel George Clarke Cheape and his wife Maud Mary Cheape of Wellfield.  They were married on June 5th 1873 in St George's, Hanover Square in London.  Maud was the proud owner of a motor car before the First World War.

Ronald Cheape joined the Kings Dragoon Guards on 22nd November 1914 near Orleans.  He was awarded the Military Cross in 1915 for leading the successful counter attack to regain the Chateau of Hooge near Ypres from the Germans.  He and rose to be a Brigadier General commanding the 86th Infantry Brigade which was in the 29th Infantry Division, First Army British Expeditionary Force.  He therefore commanded during a series of successful attacks and ultimately the breakthrough of the Western Front in 1918.  He was engaged at the battles of Lys, Ploegsteert, Ypres and finally near Ledeghem.  

He married Margaret Ismay, one of the four children of Joseph Bruce Ismay, head of the White Star Line.  Ismay survived the Titanic disaster in 1912.  Bruce Ismay left the White Star line in 1913 and retired to County Galway and died in 1937.  In his will, Bruce Ismay bequeathed to his daughter Margaret his ring engraved "Be Mindful."

Brigadier Cheape's sister Catherine Beatrice Cheape Cay lost her life in the Empress of Ireland disaster in 1914.  The ship was sailing from Quebec to Liverpool when it was struck in the fog by a Norwegian ship carrying coal.  The Empress of Ireland was severely damaged and within 15 minutes it sank with the loss of over 1,000 lives.

His brother, Hugh Annesley Gray Cheape led the last cavalry charge of the British Army at Huj in the Sinai Desert at 1:30 p.m. on 8th November 1917. 181 horses of the Worcester Yeomanry ridden by men armed with riffles and sabres, successfully charged a force of 20,000 turks, 21 German field guns and 3 Austrian 5.9 Howitzers.  He was awarded a DSO.  

Brigadier Cheape had two other brothers, Leslie and George. 

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