John Rickett AM

b. ?  d. ?

DATE OF AM ACTION: 24/05/1866 Aijabampo, Mexico.

Little is known about the life of Able Seaman John Rickett AM other than the actions which led to his award. He was the first serviceman to receive the Albert Medal.



On the 24th May, 1866, whilst Her Majesty’s ship ” Clio” was lying at anchor off the Ajiabampo, on the coast of Mexico, a boy named Thomas (or Tom) Walton, belonging to her, fell into the sea from a stage outside the ship. He was unable to swim, and was sinking the third time, when JOHN RICKETT jumped into the water, brought him to the surface, got him to the ship’s cable, and there supported him for ten or fifteen minutes, when the ship’s boat reached them. A man named Card assisted to hold the boy up from overhead. There was a heavy sea on at the time, and the port was known to be infested with sharks, and just as the ship’s boat came up, RICKETT, who was at the time still suffering from the effects of an attack of coast fever, and was in consequence very weak, relaxed his hold of the cable, and himself dropped into the water, from which he was picked up just in time to save his life. Both were insensible when taken into the boat.