b. 02/04/1847 Guernsey, Channel Islands. d. 26/02/1929 Molesey, Surrey.
DATE OF AM ACTION: 01/06/1868 Banana Creek, Congo.
Lionel was born in St Peter Port, Guernsey on 2nd April 1847 to Philip de Sausmarez and Jane Maria Barlow. He entered the Royal Navy in 1860, rising to Sub-Lieutenant 1866, and was for some time engaged in the suppression of the slave trade in South East Africa. He was present at the Bombardment of Alexandria in 1882, was mentioned in dispatches, and received the Egyptian medal with the clasp for Alexandria, the Khedive’s bronze star, and the Order of Osmanjeh (fourth class). He received special promotion and the Albert and Royal Humane Society’s medals for having, while acting as officer of the watch on June 1 1868, on H.M.S. “Myrmidon,” lying in Banana Creek, River Congo, jumped overboard into the shark-invested river and rescued a seaman who could not swim. He retired with the rank of Commander in 1883. He married his cousin, Mary, daughter of Frances Charlotte McCrea and George Bell. They would have two children.
At about 10-30 P.M. on the night of the 1st June, 1868, while Her Majesty’s ship ” Myrmidon “was lying in Banana Creek, River Congo, Western Africa, William Torrance, Able Seaman, fell overboard. Mr. DE SAUSMAREZ was Officer of the Watch, and although a strong current was running at the time, and the river infested with sharks, he immediately jumped overboard, secured Torrance (who could not swim), swam with him to the pier, and supported him there until assistance came. ‘
BURIAL LOCATION: MOLESEY CEMETERY, MOLESEY, SURREY.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: UNKNOWN.