14th October 1916
90 years ago Major General Sir Archibald Paris was wounded in the shoulder, the back and he lost his left leg; the RND lost their best beloved commander
from 'The Royal Naval Division' by Douglas Jerrold
"...the Division was shocked to learn, on the afternoon of October 14th, that General Paris had been dangerously wounded on a visit to the 190th Brigade trenches and that Major Sketchley, GSO2 of the Division for so many months had been killed.
General Paris had been with the Naval Division since the day when it was first concentrated in Antwerp. He had commanded them in their most unfortunate as well as in their most successful adventures, and he had never failed them. But he was something more, in the eyes of the Division, than a respected commander: he was an institution. He was the last relic of the days when the Division had fought under orders from the Admiralty: he was the last bulwark between the Division and the Army. And he was a very effective one. He was recognized by those in authority as an officer of pre-eminent caution and prudence. So long as he remained, there would be no attempt to interfere with the internal organization, which meant so largely the fighting efficiency of the Division. It was not, perhaps, realized at the time, how much the Division owed to General Paris in this respect, though it did not take them long to learn it. If he had never erred on the side of over-enthusiastic praises, he had shown his unswerving confidence in the capacity of the Division to do credit to itself as a fighting force, by putting no limit on promotion from within the Division, and by leaving to his subordinate commanders a reasonably free hand in the discharge of their responsibilities. The result had been that it had gathered strength from one reorganization to another, and yet had always preserved its identity. To this achievement General Paris had contributed in no small degree...."
Sir Archibald Paris died on the 30th October 1937