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Ian Dunn
390607.  Thu Aug 07, 2008 11:58 am Reply with quote

Simon Gray, the English playwright and diarist has died aged 71. He wrote Butley, Quartermaine's Terms, Melon, The Common Pursuit, The Smoking Diaries and The Last Cigarette.

Gray was once a heavy smoker, once admitting that he smoked 65 cigarettes a day.

Story from the BBC

 
markvent
390678.  Thu Aug 07, 2008 3:02 pm Reply with quote

2nd Lt William Gray
Quote:
The British advance in the Festubert area on May 9th-10th 1915, was primarily designed to detain the German 7th Corps in position, and prevent reinforcements in men and guns being sent southwards to resist the French offensive in the Artois; but it had also a subsidiary purpose, namely, the winning of the Aubers ridge, for the sake of which we had fought the Battle of Neuve chapelle. The first object was achieved, and the success of our Allies was undoubtedly largely due to the fact that the British advance had rendered it impossible for the enemy to strengthen their line to the extent that they would otherwise have done. But the second was not attained, for the strength of the German position in the Festubert region, particularly towards Fromelles and the northern part of the Aibers ridge, against which the 8th Division, advancing from Rouges Bancs, directed our main attack, had been greatly underrated. Here and there ground was gained, notably by a Territorial Battalion, the 13th (Kensington) of the London Regiment, who in most dashing manner carried three lines of the enemy’s trenches with the bayonet. But the tremendous bombardment which the German artillery directed upon the captured trenches, combined with the withering enfilading fire from machine guns mounted in fortified farm houses on the flanks of their position, rendered them untenable, and by the morning of the 10th we were obliged to relinquish all the ground which the valour of our infantry had won.

Our gallant fellows had, however, the consolation of knowing that they had accomplished and endured everything that could possibly be expected of flesh and blood; indeed, few actions in the Great War had been productive of more acts of heroism and devotion. Several have been described elsewhere in this work, but that performed by Second-Lieutenant William Edmund Gray, of the 2nd Rifle Brigade, ought not to be omitted.

Our artillery preparation began at about 5 a.m. on the morning of the 9th, and half an hour later our infantry advanced to the attack. The moment they climbed the parapet and began to cross the two hundred and fifty yards of absolutely open ground, which lay, between them and the German first line trenches, they came under a terrific fire, shrapnel and rifle bullets raking them from the front while machine guns enfiladed them pitilessly from either flank. The troops on the left of the 2nd Rifle Brigade, where our artillery preparation had failed to destroy the enemy’s entanglements, were obliged to retire, with terrible loss; but those of the “Green Jackets” who survived the fiery ordeal succeeded in carrying the German trench, which they had been ordered to take.

Second-Lieutenant Gray, who was in charge of the machine gun section of his battalion, recognizing the impossibility of getting his guns across, devoted himself to reorganising the men who had been left behind, and a little later, seeing that reinforcements were urgently needed if the captured trench were to be held, he got together all the men he could find-about eighty in number-and led them out into the death swept open. Across that fatal ground, thickly strewn with the dead and dying bodies of their comrades, they made their way, men falling at every step under the withering crossfire which raked it, and at last the brave lieutenant found himself standing beside his commanding officer in the comparative safety of the German trench. But when he looked round for the men who had followed him, he saw that scarcely a score had succeeded in winning their way through the inferno!

In the captured trench Lieutenant Gray had the good fortune to discover a German machine gun, and with it a plentiful supply of ammunition.
Editors Note: 2nd Lt Gray had to repair the German machine gun first...as it had been broken or disabled
Quote:
He lost no time in mounting it on what had originally been the parados of the trench, but which our men were now engaged in converting into the parapet; and when presently the Huns counter attacked, he hoisted them with their own petard most effectively, and assisted to drive the back with heavy loss.

As soon as darkness fell, the lieutenant left the German trench, with some men of the machine gun section, and crossing over to the British trenches, returned with his own guns and mounted them, in readiness for another counter attack. Although not so dangerous an undertaking as that of the morning, this double journey was quite sufficiently dangerous to test the nerves of the boldest, as the ground between the opposing lines was being heavily shelled by the German artillery, with the object of preventing our sending up reinforcements. At dawn, after their lost trench had been subjected to a fierce bombardment, the enemy counter attacked in great force, and eventually obliged the Riflemen to evacuate it. Lieutenant Gray was the last officer to retire, and his machine guns continued to spit death among the advancing Huns until the latter were within a few yards of the position.

Second-Lieutenant now Captain Gray, who for his great gallantry and ability on the occasion, was awarded the Military Cross, is thirty-one years of age, and his home is at Datchet, near Windsor.


Lance Corporal Victor Gray
Quote:
Among the many splendid examples of our gallant fellows cheerfully risking their own lives to save those of their comrades which the war had witnessed, that given by Lance Corporal Victor Gray, of the 4th Battalion Middlesex Regiment, on April 28th 1915, at Kemmel, is one which ought to be remembered. Between two and three o’clock in the afternoon of that day it was found necessary to put a charge of dynamite into a German sap, which was working its way into a British sap head. About two hours after the explosion the sergeant in charge of the working party and three officers went down the mine gallery to ascertain the result, leaving Lance Corporal Gray in charge of the men at the top of the shaft. They had been gassed! Gray immediately called the working party to the mouth of the shaft, and ordering four of them to go down into the mine and get the men up, hurried off to summon medical aid, and in default of finding a surgeon, returned in about three minutes with two R. A. M. C. orderlies. When he got back, he found that one of the three officers had already been rescued, and that another was just being brought up the shaft. Having helped to raise him to the surface and seen the orderlies set to work to revive him, he himself went down, to assist in recovering the third officer and the sergeant. When however, he reached the bottom of the shaft, he found that the two men who had saved the officers were already so overcome themselves by the gas that the must be got out without delay. He therefore ordered their two comrades, who had remained at the bottom of the shaft, to send them up; while he himself went down the gallery to where the third officer lay and partly carried and partly dragged him to the bottom of the shaft, and, with the assistance of the others, sent him up also. By this time however Gray and his brave comrades were so overcome by the poisonous fumes that they recognized that it would be impossible for them to get the sergeant out. Gray therefore ascended to the surface, and sent down four men to the assistance of the sergeant, he himself, though feeling desperately ill, pluckily descending again and rendering them what little assistance he could at the bottom of the shaft. Unhappily, when the sergeant was brought up he was beyond the reach of human aid, and all efforts to revive him proved fruitless. Lance corporal Gray, who was awarded the D.C.M., “for conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty,” is thirty years of age.


So ... two gallant Grays ... brothers ... and as it happens, my great uncles.

Mark.

 
Ian Dunn
403975.  Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:37 am Reply with quote

Gray wolves (personally, my favourite animal), vary widely in colour, despite the name. They can have grey, brown, white, black and red fur. Aging wolves do go grey fur, much like an aging human grows grey hair.

Grey wolf on Wikipedia

 
gerontius grumpus
404272.  Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:57 pm Reply with quote

SI unit of radiation dose.

 
Ion Zone
412552.  Wed Sep 24, 2008 4:13 pm Reply with quote

Gray is official name of the colour of pure white horses. (Apparently...)

Also, Photographers are supposed be surrounded by a specific neutral gray when they work on photoshop\other image programs, as well as using pure white lights on dim (most lights are slightly green or yellow, if I remember). If you have a colour, even a hint of a shade, your eyes grow quickly acustomed to it and it can show as a colour cast in your image.

 
suze
412563.  Wed Sep 24, 2008 4:26 pm Reply with quote

Most horses which appear to be white are actually grays (or greys if one is not American), certainly.

True white horses do exist though, but are rare. However both horses which played Silver (the Lone Ranger's horse, for people too young to remember) really were white.

 
Flash
412575.  Wed Sep 24, 2008 4:55 pm Reply with quote

"White" horses are born white, whereas Greys are born dark and turn grey. Also "whites" have pink skin, whereas greys have dark skin.

All grey thoroughbreds are descended from an 18th-century stallion called Alcock's Arabian.

 
legspin
412584.  Wed Sep 24, 2008 5:20 pm Reply with quote

Flash wrote:
"White" horses are born white, whereas Greys are born dark and turn grey. Also "whites" have pink skin, whereas greys have dark skin.

All grey thoroughbreds are descended from an 18th-century stallion called Alcock's Arabian.


I remember seeing a program about the horses in the New Forest and how they were branded. The orignal method of a re hot iron was being replaced by freeze branding instead, as it was considered more humane. The link to above is in dark-skinned horses the brand appears white and in pink-skined it appears grey iirc.

 
Ion Zone
413008.  Thu Sep 25, 2008 2:40 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
as it was considered more humane.


Still painful, if a horse is freezebranded, they can't be ridden for a week or two.

 
legspin
413104.  Thu Sep 25, 2008 6:47 pm Reply with quote

Ion Zone wrote:
Quote:
as it was considered more humane.


Still painful, if a horse is freezebranded, they can't be ridden for a week or two.


I have always thought that branding was a cruel practice no matter what way it is done.
Particularly if done by a multi-national corporation.

 
bobwilson
413115.  Thu Sep 25, 2008 7:17 pm Reply with quote

Charles Gray Star of films, most notably as the narrator in the classic Rocky Horror Picture Show

 
Flash
413186.  Fri Sep 26, 2008 4:14 am Reply with quote

legspin wrote:
I have always thought that branding was a cruel practice no matter what way it is done.
Particularly if done by a multi-national corporation.

Well, that certainly raises a couple of questions - the first being "why?" and the second also being "why?" but in a slightly more bemused tone.

 
mckeonj
413211.  Fri Sep 26, 2008 5:22 am Reply with quote

Which famous writer could be likened to a side of beef, in being both rare and branded?

 
Sebastian flyte
413227.  Fri Sep 26, 2008 5:53 am Reply with quote

Dorian Gray the wiki and the syndrome.

 

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