Richard was a chauffeur in seaside town of Southport where he lived. His was a keen cyclist in the summer months (and won many championships including the tandem world record.) During the winter months he turned to cross-country running and also won several championships.
He was part of the ambulance service fighting in April 1918 near Bethune, France. Due to enemy attack the platoon had no means of communications. About 200 were wounded but could not be evacuated to be hospitalised as the road out was full of the debris from explosions. Private Masters volunteered and after clearing the road of all sorts of debris, eventually got through.
He made journey after journey throughout the afternoon over a road which was subject to constant machine-gun fire and bombing (it was even bombed by an aeroplane.)
He is the only Ambulance person believed to have received a Victoria Cross.