Geoffrey Walter Chardin EM

b. 02/01/1897 Hackney, London.  d. 29/05/1923 Obuasi, Ashanti, Gold Coast (now Ghana).

DATE OF EM ACTION: 29/05/1923 Obuasi, Ashanti, Gold Coast (now Ghana).

Geoffrey Walter Chardin was born in Hackney, London on 2nd January 1897, the third of four children of Frederick William and Jane Chardin. His brother Richard Edward would be killed in action in France in 1915. Geoffrey served in WWI firstly with the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, and then later with the Royal Flying Corps. He survived the war and became a miner on the Gold Coast of Africa (now Ghana). He was married with no children at the time of his death when trying to rescue a native workman in Obuasi, Ashanti on 29th May 1923, aged 26.



On May 29th, 1923, at Obuasi, Ashanti, while a cyanide solution was being prepared in a vat on the premises of the Ashanti Goldfields Corporation a native, named Robert, who was working in the vat contrary to orders was overcome by the fumes. Two other natives Sikeyena and Guruba attempted to rescue him but were themselves overcome. Mr. Chardin, who was on the spot realised the danger and the need for immediate action if the men were to be saved. Without hesitation he entered the vat by a ladder but was himself overpowered by the fumes. Mr. Morris, and Mr. Skinner, the shift engineer, arrived and between them managed to drag Mr. Chardin out of the vat. Skinner then collapsed but Morris tied a rope round himself, re-entered the vat and eventually succeeded in bringing out the three natives alive. Unfortunately Mr. Chardin and the two natives Sikeyena and Robert succumbed, but the conduct of Mr. Chardin and Mr. Morris was extremely gallant and Mr. Morris undoubtedly risked his life in entering the vat no less than three times in his work of rescue.