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Heald, William Lofthouse

Heald, William Lofthouse

Alias: None

Title: Mr

Rank: Petty Officer (Royal Navy)

Dates: 1875-1929

Nationality: British

Awards: Polar Medal (silver)

William Lofthose Heald was born at York Castle on 25 December 1875 at York Castle. He joined the Royal Navy as a boy and by 1892 was rated as a 'boy second class'. He served on a variety of ships, rising through the ranks to become leading seaman in 1899, but was reduced to able seaman in 1901. He was drafted on to the British National Antarctic Expedition 1901-04 (Discovery) as a seaman, following a course of instruction in ballooning. In September 1902 he saved the life of Hartley Travers Ferrar, who was suffering from severe scurvy.

On his return, Heald was promoted to the rank of Petty Officer first class. He left the Navy in May 1908 and joined the Royal Fleet Reserve, and served as a petty officer during the British Antarctic Expedition 1910-13 (Terra Nova). He continued serving at sea with the RFR in World War I. He died on 24.12.1929.

Heald is commemorated in the Antarctic by Heald Island (78°15' S 163°49' E), an island situated between the Koettlitz and Walcott Glaciers.

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