This was certainly the case for Trooper Lee of Roberts Horse
Lawrence Edward Lee was born in 1879 in the district of West Ham, Essex England.
Lawrence’s occupation was a ships steward and like a lot of young men he found his way to the Cape where he enlisted into Roberts Horse on the 23rd January 1900. It wasn’t too long before he was engaged in battle. He was part of Brigadier General Broadwood’s command and was severely wounded at Sanna’s Post on 31st March 1900. Trooper Lee was wounded from a gunshot at a range of 500 yards. The bullet entered high up on the right buttock close to the middle line and emerged just behind the right trochanter (Tubercle of the femur near its joint with the hip bone).
Lawrence was then hospitalised, his medical record states he was at Rosebank. I am not sure if this was a general hospital or a stationary one. However, after 8 weeks of convalescence and treatment Trooper Lawrence Lee was deemed fit for duty. We might be thinking he may try to join a town guard or a line infantry unit after his severe wound at Koorn Spruit, but alas, he requested to join the Bloemfontein Mounted Police. However, for some reason this request did not come to fruition. He did manage to get back in the saddle again, albeit not one that can be found strapped to a horse. Trooper Lee joined the Cape Colony Cycle Corp and served as a Corporal from February 14th 1901 until the 30th June 1902. I would imagine that whilst serving in the Cyclist Corps his old wound would have reminded him of that fateful Saturday back in March 1900 every time he rode over some rough ground. His wound did heal thoroughly although stiffness and slight pain remained with him during his service.
Trooper L E Lee Service number 2502 Roberts Horse QSA Medal 3 Clasps Relief of Kimberley, Paardeberg and Driefontein.
Corporal L E Lee Service Number 31058 Cape Colony Cycle Corp KSA 2 Date Clasps.
You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.