Peter Aplin (1753--1817), Admiral in the Royal Navy, began his naval career on the William and Mary as a captain's servant. Other early posts were on the Guernsey , Savage , Niger , and Prudent . While he was a midshipman aboard the Roebuck , First Lieutenant Leek was killed during the British attempt to break the rebel blockade at the mouth of the Hudson River, and Aplin was promoted to Leek's post. This was the first of a series of promotions throughout the Revolutionary War. On April 23, 1778, he received command of the Strombolo , and a year later was appointed master and commander of the sloop Swift . By November 1780, he became post captain of the 24-gun frigate Fowey . Aplin commanded the Fowey during the British defense of Yorktown, and lost his ship to French fire from Saint-Simon's attack during the night of October 10-11, 1781, after which Aplin and his crew joined the land forces under Cornwallis. He did not return to sea duty until 1797, when he commanded the Hector , a 74-gun frigate, in a battle off Cape St. Vincent. Two years later, he was promoted to flag rank, and, although never again taking sea duty, rose to the rank of vice admiral of the white shortly before his death at his home in Charlton Kings, Cheltenham, England, on April 17, 1817. Two of his sons, Benjamin Aplin and John George Aplin, also had distinguished careers in the Royal Navy.