John Downie likeness

John Downie cap badgePrivate John Downie

2nd Battalion Royal Scots
Service No: 6831

John Downie grave

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Personal details

Family Information

Son of Michael and Elizabeth Fitzsimmons Downie. Elder brother of Thomas Downie. Husband of Annie Moore Downie (1887 - 1913). Father of 2 children, Elizabeth (07/12/1910 - 07/07/1993) and Michael (13/09/1912 - ). John's half-brother Private Peter Downie of the 4th Battalion Gordon Highlanders (16258) Died of Malaria at home on the 01/11/1918. He had 2 brothers serving. John's stepbrothers and sisters - Peter (26/12/1891-01/11/1918), Michael (1892 - ), Catherine (1896 - ), Margaret (1898 - ). From the 1901 Census - Address - 49g Coatbank St, Coatbridge - Michael Downie aged 40, Mary A Downie (John's stepmother) aged 52, John's half brothers and half sisters Patrick Downie aged 15, Michael Downie aged 9, Peter Downie aged 9, Catherine Downie aged 5, Margaret Downie aged 3. From the 1881 Census - Address - 14 Jacksons Land,, Low Coats, Coatbridge - Michael Downie aged 22, Elizabeth Downie aged 21, John Downie aged 4 months, boarder John Downie aged 7. John's Pension was originally awarded to his wife Annie who died on the 12/05/1913 and was then awarded to his stepmother Mary Ann then Guardians of John's children Mr and Mrs Thomas Moore of 15g Coatbank St, Coatbridge. Date awarded was the 29/10/1915.

Born / Resided

Coatbridge / 17 Coatbank St, Coatbridge.

Died

Killed in Action on the 21/04/1915 near Kemmel

Enlisted

Re-enlisted Hamilton 1914 originally Hamilton 23/08/1899

Employed

Puddler in Coats Iron Works / Reservist.

Age

34 / DOB - 08/12/1880

Buried / Remembered

Kemmel Chateau Military Cemetery (E. 22), West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

Cemetery / Memorial Information

Kemmel Chateau was north-east of Kemmel village and the cemetery was established on the north side of the chateau grounds in December 1914. It continued to be used by divisions fighting on the southern sectors of the Belgian front until March 1918, when after fierce fighting involving both Commonwealth and French forces, the village and cemetery fell into German hands in late April. The cemetery was retaken later in the year, but in the interval it was badly shelled and the old chateau destroyed. There are 1,135 Commonwealth burials of the First World War in the cemetery and 21 from the Second World War (which all date from the Allied withdrawal ahead of the German advance of May 1940).

Additional Information

The Battalion arrived at Boulogne on the 14/08/1914 and were part of the 8th Brigade, 3rd Division. John arrived in France on the 20/09/1914. He re-joined his regiment at the outbreak of war and died in the attempt to capture Hill 60 near Kemmel. SEE PHOTOS x 23 FOR THE BATTALION WAR DIARY MARCH - APRIL 1915. The Battalion War Diary for the 21/04/1915 states - "J10 and J1 trenches heavily shelled in morning by 8 " high explosive shells, 82 shells being fired. Our Artillery replied by shelling PETIT BOIS. Visual signalling arranged from J10 to Headquarters by electric lamp in case telephones went wrong. Casualties : Eight killed and six wounded. "A" Coy relieved "B" Coy on account of the shelling they got. Quiet day in Billets although shelling still continued towards ST. ELOI. Lieut. Carlisle goes to Field Ambulance". John is listed as DOWNEY and 2ND ROYAL SCOTS FUSILIERS on the Memorial. John joined the Royal Scots in August 1899 and served in the Boer War (received the Queen Victoria Medal and King Edward Medal) and in India. John shares a grave with Private W. McGill of the Royal Scots who fell on the same day (see main grave photo). Grave photo donated by Mick McCann at britishwargraves.co.uk. See Directory for John's half-brother Private Peter Downie's page. Huge thanks to David Owens for John's main grave photo and his British War and Victory Medals. John is also remembered on the St Patrick's Church Roll of Honour (book). See photos for John's Medal Index Card, his Newspaper clipping, his CWGC Grave Registration x 2, his Headstone Report, another photo of John's grave, his British War and Victory Medals, his CWGC Grave Registration x 2, his Service Medal and Award Rolls, John's Pension Records x 2, his Service Record x 23, Kemmel Chateau Military Cemetery and the Royal Scots Cap Badge.

Photos
John Downie Medal Index CardJohn Downie newspaper clippingJohn Downie newspaper clippingJohn Downie remembered at homeJohn Downie remembered at homeJohn Downie remembered at homeJohn Downie remembered at homeJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photoJohn Downie additional photo

War Diaries

The battalion War Diary is available on the National Archives website.

Creative Commons License

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