Major James Hastings Lindsay Metcalfe Toone was born in Ghazipur in the Upper Provinces in January 1816, the son of a Bengal Civil Servant, and arrived in India as a Cadet in June 1833. Originally posted to the 8th Light Cavalry, he transferred to the 2nd Light Cavalry as a Cornet in June 1836 and gained advancement to Lieutenant in November 1841. Toone was subsequently actively engaged in the First Afghan War 1838-42 and distinguished himself in the advance on Candahar in 1839, Captain H. Havelock noting the following incident in his Narrative of the War in Afghanistan:
' ... the Cavalry outposts often found themselves skirmishing with robber bands. One such was disposed of near Quetta by a detachment of the 2nd Bengal Light Cavalry. Cornet Toone of that Regiment cut down its leader and decapitated him'.
Afterwards appointed Adjutant of the 7th Irregular Cavalry, Toone was transferred to the newly-raised 11th Light Cavalry in February 1842, as a result of 'misconduct in Afghanistan', but quickly regained his laurels with appointment as Adjutant. With the Regiment he went on to witness further action at Punniar in December 1843 and, as a Brevet Captain, in the Second Sikh War, when he was present at Mooltan. Placed on the Retired List in May 1854, with the rank of Hon. Major, Toone died at Qunita Ribeiro Secco, Madeira in December 1886. In his Will he bequeathed a fortune amounting to £55,000.