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Cyril was the only child of John Basil and Euphemia Trollope of 8 Oaklands Road, Bromley. He was educated at Colquhoun Villa and Larchfield School, Helensburgh, and at Fettes College Edinburgh where he was in Moredun House from 1910 to 1914. He was in the OTC and shot for the school team at Bisley in 1914. He won the Mcleod Shooting Cup in 1914.
In 1915 he joined the London Scottish Regiment in which he obtained his commission. He transferred to the RFC towards the end of 1916 and received his “wings” in 1917. During the week before he was due to go to the front he was test flying a plane in Doncaster when it crashed killing Cyril and his passenger.
A witness reported “ about 7.10pm I heard a machine approaching with the engine missing fire. The engine was spluttering but did not stop altogether. The pilot tried to turn the machine round to get to the aerodrome again, making a sharp turn to the left, with a steep “bank”. The machine at once started to sideslip inwards towards the ground, and got into a spinning nose-dive. It put its nose down and spun round twice to the ground.” Another witness said that Cyril had been wrong to try and turn round, he was a bit overconfident and probably thought he could do anything.
Cyril was found underneath the wreckage, his passenger behind him, both were dead on arrival at hospital. The inquest returned a verdict of accidental death.
Thank you to Fettes College for their assistance.
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