Iles, J O


JOHN OWEN ILES was the only son of John Cyril lies, H.M. Divisional
Inspector of Schools, and Enid Agnes Machell his wife, of Endhall, Tettenhall
Wood, Wolverhampton.
He entered the School in 1907, and left in 1912, with an Open Mathematical
Scholarship at Caius College, Cambridge, where he took Honours in
the First Part of the Mathematical Tripos, and in the First Part of the Law
Tripos. He was a good swimmer, and got his Half-Blue for the Quarter-
Mile in 1913 and 1914, and also represented Cambridge at Chess in both
these years.
He was still an undergraduate when War broke out, but received a
Commission in the 6th Battalion (Territorials) of the South Staffordshire
Regiment, in September, 1914, being subsequently transferred to the 1st
Battalion of the Regiment, as a University candidate, in May, 1915. Within
a fortnight he went to France, and was attached to the ist Royal Welsh
Fusiliers. He had more than once been commended for excellent patrol
reports before he was killed in the great attack on Loos and Hulluch, September
25th, 1915. He was shot through the head while leading his men, and
died instantly, his last words being " I am going on." Age 22.
A Captain of the Welsh Fusiliers, at the time in command of the Regiment,
wrote :—
" The Staff was very anxious to get information about the wire, but had
not been able to do so. Your son and a Subaltern, called Turner, went out,
crept right up to the wire, and brought back exactly the information required
: they were personally congratulated by two Generals, and brought
great credit on the Battalion by their good work."
His Colonel also wrote :—
" He was a very fearless boy, but combined considerable judgment with
his boldness. Had he lived I feel sure he would have done well in the