Name: Otway Trevor MacRitchie Leckie
DoB: August 18 1882
Regt: 104th Rifles Indian Army; Capt., 1911.
DoD: April 13 1915
Academic Career: CGS 1891-1900
Otway was the eldest of three sons born to Dr. David Leckie and his wife, Agnes Isabella Kean Brown. He and his brother, Arthur James Bruce were born in Calcutta, India, but William Victor was born in Scotland. By the time the boys came to Carlisle grammar school, the family was living at 11, Chatsworth Square. David Leckie had graduated from the University of Glasgow in 1869; was a Surgeon in 1873; and a Surgeon Major in 1883 and then a Lieutenant-Colonel. Later his middle boy Arthur was to become a doctor graduating as an MD from the University of Edinburgh in 1912.
At school, Otway played for the Rugby team between 1898 and 1900 when he became captain. He joined the cricket team in 1899 and captained it in 1900. He won the senior challenge cup in 1899.
Otway joined the Indian Army and is mentioned as a captain in 1911. In the Great War, he joined the 104th Wellesley’s Rifles which was part of the Indian Infantry of the 6th Poona Division and was sent to Mesopotamia in November 1914 after Britain declared war on Turkey. Having captured Basra in 1914, the 6th Poona Division advanced up river in 1915. The Turks fought back and opened an attack on Shaiba and Qurna on April 11. “On 13 April, two days after the bombardment of Shaiba started, Turkish troops attempted to outflank the British across the floods that separated Shaiba from Basra, while the Turkish cavalry prepared for a frontal assault. However the timely intervention of two British Infantry battalions served to rapidly disperse the Turkish cavalry, resulting in a full withdrawal by the latter into woods nearby. Possession of these was in turn secured by the British following an infantry battle throughout 14 April. Casualties during the woodland battle were heavy; the Turks incurred around 2,400 casualties, and the British around half that number. Some 5,000 troops on each side were involved in the fighting in all.”* Otway died of his wounds on April 13, 1915 and is commemorated at Basra, Iraq. It is likely he fell in this campaign.
104th Wellesley’s Rifles
Otway’s family had “Faithful unto Death” inscribed on his gravestone.
a) Carlisle School Memorial Register 1264-1924
b) Census: 1901 RG13/4870; 1891
c) Births 1882 Ref Page 625 GRO Army Births Indices (1881-1965)
d) Army List August 1878
e) HARTS Army List 1888
f) Medical Register 1913
g) Quotation taken from*www.firstworldwar.com
h) Scotland’s People (various)