John Hampden Grammar School

Leonard Gregory Keen


Leonard was born on the 9th October 1899 in High Wycombe to William and Lavina Keen. William was a chair manufacturer who had moved from Liverpool. Leonard had two older sisters and one older and two younger brothers. They lived with a servant in Highchester, 180 West Wycombe Road.


Leonard studied at the School in 1915, winning prizes for drawing, design and general art. He also attended the RGS (1910 – 1914).



He enlisted into the Devonshire Regiment (2nd Battalion) in Aylesbury and was killed, maybe in the village of Roucy, aged 18 on May 26th 1918 during the Battle of Bois des Buttes, which was at the start of the Battle of the Aisne.


The 2nd Devons were the first British unit honoured with the Croix de Guerre because of their resistance during the battle. His body was never identified and he is remembered on the Soissons Memorial in Aisne. His listing with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission can be found here.