John Donald Kelly

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Admiral of the Fleet

Sir John Donald Kelly

GCB, GCVO
Admiral Sir John Donald Kelly (1930-1935).png
Admiral Sir John Donald Kelly c.1930-1935.
Born13 July 1871
Southsea, Hampshire
Died4 November 1936 (aged 65)
Marylebone, London
AllegianceFlag United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.gif United Kingdom
Service BranchNaval Ensign of the United Kingdom from 1801.png Royal Navy
Highest RankFlag United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.gif, Admiral of the Fleet
Commands heldHMS Hermione (1893)
HMS Dublin (1912)
HMS Devonshire (1904)
HMS Weymouth (1910)
HMS Princess Royal (1911)
Operations Division
Fourth Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Supplies and Transport
1st Battle Squadron
Atlantic Fleet
Home Fleet
Portsmouth Station

Admiral of the Fleet Sir John Donald Kelly GCB, GCVO (13 July 1871 – 4 November 1936) was a Royal Navy flag officer who went on to serve as Fourth Sea Lord (1924–1927) then Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet (1931–1932), Commander-in-Chief, Home Fleet (1932–1933) and finally Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth Station (1934–1936).[1]

Naval Career

Kelly joined the training ship HMS Britannia as a cadet on 15 January 1884. Promoted to Midshipman on 15 November 1886, he joined the corvette HMS Calliope in January 1887. He transferred to the armoured frigate HMS Agincourt in the Channel Squadron in August 1888, to the battleship HMS Anson in the Channel Squadron in May 1889 and then to the corvette HMS Volage in the Training Squadron in September 1889. Promoted to Sub-Lieutenant on 14 February 1891 and to lieutenant on 31 December 1893, he joined the cruiser HMS Katoomba on the Australia Station in February 1894.[2]

He transferred to the cruiser HMS Royal Arthur, flagship of the Australia Station, in November 1897 and, after qualifying in gunnery at the gunnery school HMS Excellent in 1901, he became gunnery officer in HMS Forte on the Cape of Good Hope and West Coast of Africa Station and saw action in her during the Second Boer War. Promoted to Commander on 30 June 1904, Kelly became Executive Officer in the armoured cruiser HMS Sutlej on the China Station in November 1904, Executive Officer in the cruiser HMS Hawke in the Reserve Fleet in 1906 and Executive Officer in the battleship HMS Cornwallis in the Atlantic Fleet in January 1907.He went on to be a member of the teaching staff at the Royal Naval College, Dartmouth in July 1908 and, having been promoted to Captain on 22 June 1911.[3]

He then became commanding officer of the light cruiser HMS Hermione in the Home Fleet in April 1914 and commanding officer of the cruiser HMS Dublin in the Mediterranean Fleet in July 1914. Kelly served in the First World War: on 4 August 1914 he was assigned, as commanding officer of the cruiser HMS Dublin. Kelly became commanding officer of the cruiser HMS Devonshire in the Grand Fleet in March 1916. In September 1916 went on to be commanding officer of the cruiser HMS Weymouth in the Grand Fleet. In July 1917 he was appointed commanding officer of the battlecruiser HMS Princess Royal. Kelly became Director of Operations at the Admiralty in July 1919. He was appointed a naval aide-de-camp to the King on 21 March 1921.[4]

Flag Appointments

Promoted to rear admiral on 21 November 1921. On 27 July, 1922 he was then appointed Rear-Admiral in 4th Battle Squadron then attached to the Mediterranean Fleet until June, 1923. In April 1924 he was then appointed Fourth Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Supplies and Transport, 1924–27 in this post was promoted to Vice-Admiral, in 1926 . In 1927 he was next appointed Vice-Admiral Commanding, 1st Battle Squadron until 1929. He was the appointed Admiral Commanding, Reserves, from 1929 to 1931, and whilst in this post he was promoted to Admiral in 1930. In 1931 he was next appointed Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet until February 1932.[5]

In March 1932 he was next appointed Commander-in-Chief, Home Fleet and held that role until September 1933. In 1934 he was made First and Principal Naval ADC to the King George V until 1936, and during the same period his final flag appointment was as Commander-in-Chief, Portsmouth Station from 1934 to 1936. In 1936 he was promoted to Admiral of the Fleet, and then placed on the retired list.[6]

References

  1. "Kelly, Admiral of the Fleet Sir John Donald, (13 July 1871–4 Nov. 1936)". WHO'S WHO & WHO WAS WHO (2020). London and Oxford: A & C Black and Oxford University Press. 1 December 2007. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.u212208. Retrieved 7 October 2020.
  2. Who's Who and Who Was Who (2020)
  3. Who's Who and Who Was Who (2020)
  4. Who's Who and Who Was Who (2020)
  5. Who's Who and Who Was Who (2020)
  6. Who's Who and Who Was Who (2020)