Colonel Eugene Ryan was the son of Mr Thomas Ryan. He was educated at Queen's College Cork and Edinburgh University and took the Licentiates of the Royal College of Physicians (LRCP) and Surgeons (LRCS) Edinburgh and Licentiate of the Royal Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons (LRFP&S) Glasgow in 1898.
He was commissioned into the RAMC on 29 January 1901. In 1901 and 1902, he took part in the operations in Cape Colony, Orange River Colony and Transvaal and received the Queen's Medal with five clasps.
During the Great War, Colonel Eugene Ryan served with the British Expeditionary Force in France from August 1914 to 5 April 1919. From September 1916 to April 1919, he was on the personal staff of the Commander-in-Chief General Sir Douglas Haig, from whom he received a signed photograph autographed To Mickie Ryan with heartfelt gratitude for what he has done to keep myself and staff fit from the date of mobilisation to the end. D Haig, Field Marshal, Xmas 1918. He was mentioned in despatches seven times having been in the retreat from Mons, the Battle of the Aisne (Sep-Oct 1914), 1st Battle of Ypres (1914), Battle of Loos (1915), and the Somme (1916). He was decorated with the Legion of Honour and the L'Etoile de Roumania.
Colonel Eugene Ryan retired on 29 September 1930 and worked as a Recruiting Medical Officer, London Recruiting Depôt. He died in Cork on 11 April 1951.
Service Record — Eugene Ryan
6 Sep–2 Dec 1900 Civil Surgeon at home.
29 Jan 1901 Commissioned Lieutenant RAMC.
Aug 1901–Mar 1902 Served in the Second Anglo Boer War, South Africa where he joined 9 Brigade at Klerksdorp, Transvaal. He was invalided from South Africa. Awarded the Queen's Medal with five clasps.
Jan 19o9–Aug 1909 Attended the Senior Officers' Course at the Royal Army Medical College, Millbank, London. Approved as a Specialist in Midwifery and Gynaecology.
Oct 1912 Appointed Officer Commanding Louise Margaret Maternity Hospital, Aldershot.
29 Jan 1913 Promoted Major RAMC.
28 July 1914 Start of the Great War 4 Aug 1914 Britain declares war on Germany.
9 Aug 1914 Proceeded on active service as medical officer to HQ 1 Corps British Expeditionary Force. On 14 August 1914, crossed to France with General Sir Douglas Haig, commanding the BEF 1st Army Corps, whose overall commander was Field Marshal Sir John D French. In December 1915, Haig replaced French as Commander-in-chief. Colonel Ryan served in France until April 1919, when he returned with Haig to England.
Aug 1915–Aug 1916 Officer Commanding No 18 Casualty Clearing Station (Lapugnoy).
17 Sep 1915–5 Apr 1919 Held the rank of Temporary Lieutenant Colonel (Temp Lt Col).
30 Nov 1915 Brought to the notice of the Secretary of State for war by Field Marshal Sir John D French for gallant and distinguished service in the field. (Supplement to the London Gazette 1 January 1916 published 31 December 1915).
14 Jan 1916 Major E Ryan became a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) with effect from 1 January 1916. (Supplement to the London Gazette 14 January 1916 published 11 January 1916).
24 Feb 1916 The President of the French Republic bestowed the Legion d'Honneur (Croix de Chevalier) to Major E Ryan in recognition of his distinguished service during the campaign. (London Gazette 24 February 1916 published 22 February 1916).
Aug 1916–Sep 1916 Officer Commanding No 4 Casualty Clearing Station (Beauval).
8 Sep 1916 Major (Temp Lt Col) relinquished his temporary rank on re-posting (Supplement to the London Gazette 25 October 1916 published 24 October 1916.)
25 Sep 1916 Promoted Temp Lt Col whilst specially employed. He served as the medical officer to the Personal Staff of the Commander-in Chief of the Army in France until 5 April 1919. (Supplement to the London Gazette 8 November 1916 published 7 November 1916.)
1 Jan 1917 Major (Temp Lt Col) E Ryan was promoted Brevet Lieutenant Colonel. (London Gazette 29 December 1916).
3 June 1918 Major and Brevet Lt Col E Ryan DSO was made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) in the Birthday Honours for valuable services rendered in France and Flanders.
15 Apr 1919–27 Apr 1919 Held the rank of Acting Lieutenant Colonel.
Apr 1919 Took command of Bethnal Green Military Hospital London.
1 Nov 1919 Embarked at Devonport for India.
June 1920–Jan 1925 Officer Commanding Station Hospital Kasauli, Himachal Pradesh.
3 Apr 1921–15 Feb 1925 Honorary Surgeon to the Viceroy of India.
22 Sep 1922 Brevet Lt Col E Ryan CMG DSO became a Commander of the Order of the Crown of Romania. (Edinburgh Gazette 3 October 1922)
9 Mar 1923 Promoted Lieutenant Colonel RAMC.
Jan 1925 Embarked at Bombay for England.
Apr 1925–Jan 1927 Officer Commanding the Military Hospital, Edinburgh Castle.
18 Feb 1926 Promoted Brevet Colonel L/RAMC. Honorary Physician to King George V from February 1926 until Ryan's retirement in 1930.
2 Mar 1926 Lt Col E Ryan CMG DSO was awarded the Médaille de la Reconnaissance Française en Argent by the President of the French Republic. His name had been put forward to the British Government during the War of 1914–1919 by the Commanders of the Armies of certain Allied Powers. In 1926, the Government of the Powers concerned approved granting the decorations (London Gazette 2 March 1926).
Jan 1927 Embarked for Shanghai.
Jan 1927–Nov 1927 Served in Shanghai. Established 7th General Hospital Shangai Defence Force.
Jan 1928–29 Sept 1930 Officer Commanding the Queen Alexandra's Military Hospital, Millbank, London.
29 Sep 1930 Retired.
29 Sep 1933 Ceased to remain on the Regular Army Reserve of Officers.
13 Aug 1937–28 Sep 1938 Appointed Recruiting Medical Officer London Recruiting Depôt.
11 Apr 1951 Died in Cork Ireland.
Drew R., 1968. Entry No: 223. Commissioned Officers in the Medical Services of the British Army 1660–1960, Vol II Roll of Officers in the RAMC 1898–1960. London: Wellcome Historical Library.
Obituary. J Roy Army Med Corps 1951, xcvi: 6; 415 (June 1951).
Ryan E. P., 2013. Haig's Medical Officer: The papers of Colonel Eugene "Micky" Ryan CMG DSO RAMC. Barnsley South Yorkshire: Pen and Sword Military.
Changes of Station January 1903. Br Med J (1903); 1: 469 (Published 21 February 1903).
Succession Books Vol XXI, Returns of statement of service of RAMC Officers.
O'Moore C., and Humphris E. M., The VC and DSO Vol III from 1 January 1916 to 12 June 1923.