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Colonel Gamaliy

Gamaliy, Vasily Danilovich (Kuban Cossack) - born in 1886; colonel, became famous for his raid through all Persia (along the Turkish border) up to Mesopotamia in 1916. He began in the service as a volunteer of the 2nd class in the 1st Black Sea regiment. Having completed his term in the regiment he was accepted into the Orenburg military school, where he graduated in 1911 and joined the 1st Umansky Cossack regiment as a khorunzhiy (junior commissioned rank in the Cossack cavalry).

As a sotnik (lieutenant of Cossacks), he voluntarily accepted the challenge of establishing personal contact between the Russians and the British on the banks of the Tigris river. Gamaliy left on the 27th of April, 1916 with a hundred Cossacks of the Umansky regiment. He managed to meet the British in Basra after 10 days of riding through mountains and canyons, taking cover from the Turks and Persians. There he was awarded the British Military Cross and on the 10th of July, 1916 returned to where he started at town Kermanshakh.

For distinguished military service in the Russian army Gamaliy was awarded the St. George order and the Golden Weapon. During the Civil War colonel commanded the 2nd Kabardinsky regiment, and then the Kuban Brigade. In 1920 he was wounded and evacuated from Crimea to Constantinople and after recovering stayed in emigration. Then he lived in France, and moved to the US in 1948, where he passed away in 1956.

 

 

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