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  cap badgePrivate William Ralston

12th Battalion Royal Scots
Service No: 51087

William Ralston grave

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Personal details

Family Information

Son of Alexander and Isabella Ralston of 61 Manse St, Coatbridge. William's twin brother Robert (3541) also served with the 2/1st Lothian and Borders Horse Yeomanry and the 2rd Battalion Royal Scots then to the 15th Battalion. He enlisted on the same day as William and they both joined the 2/1st Lothian and Borders Horse Yeomanry. Their Service Numbers were 3542 and 3541 and their Royal Scots Service Numbers were 51085 and 51087. Robert was discharged from the Royal Scots on the 11/09/1919 due to illness. These brave young twins enlisted together, fought together but sadly William fell. From the 1901 Census - Address - 299 Forrest St, Airdrie - Alexander Ralston aged 44, Isabella Ralston aged 41, Kate Ralston aged 19, Alexander Ralston aged 14, Jeanie Ralston aged 14, John Ralston aged 8, Isabella Ralston aged 6, Robert Ralston aged 2, William Ralston aged 2. William's Pension was awarded to his father Alexander. On his Pension Records William is listed as wounded and missing on the 17/10/1918.

Born / Resided

Airdrie / 61 Manse St, Coatbridge

Died

Killed in Action 17/10/1918

Enlisted

Coatbridge 08/01/1917

Employed

(No data. If you have details, please add a comment)

Age

19 / DOB - 14/01/1899

Buried / Remembered

Harlebeke New British Cemetery (VII. C. 7), West-Vlaanderen, Belgium

Cemetery / Memorial Information

Harlebeke village was taken on the night of 19-20 October 1918 by the 9th (Scottish) Division. Harlebeke New British Cemetery was made after the Armistice when graves were brought in from the surrounding battlefields of 1918 and, in 1924-25, from German cemeteries or plots in Belgium. The cemetery now contains 1,116 Commonwealth burials and commemorations of the First World War. 181 of the burials are unidentified and a special memorial is erected to one casualty who is believed to be buried among them. Other special memorials record the names of 19 casualties buried by the Germans in other burial grounds whose graves could not be found on concentration. There are also ten burials of the Second World War in the cemetery.

Additional Information

William and his twin brother Robert were just 6 days off their 18th birthday when they enlisted. William was formerly with the 2/1st Lothian and Borders Horse Yeomanry (3542) from 13/03/1917 to 23/02/1918 when he transferred to the Royal Scots. William joined his Battalion in the field on the 26/02/1918 and was Wounded in Action (Gas) on the 09/04/1918. See Service Records Records 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 and 22 for letters and replies sent to William's mother regarding injuries. William's father Alexander sent a letter regarding delivery of William's Memorial Plaque (see Service Records 6, 7 and 8). Also remembered on the Maxwell Parish Church Roll of Honour (see photos). William was reburied in Harlebeke New British Cemetery (see photos). See photos for William's Army Register of Soldiers Effects, his Service Medal and Award Rolls, his CWGC Grave Registration x 2, his Headstone Report x 2, William's Reburial Form, Harlebeke New British Cemetery, his Service Records x 23 (lots of information), William's Pension Records x 3, his former Regiment the Lothian and Borders Horse Cap Badge and the Royal Scots Cap Badge. Finally see photos for William's twin brother Robert's Medal Index Card, his Service Medal and Award Rolls, his Silver War Badge record, the Silver War Badge (issued to service personnel who had been honourably discharged due to wounds or sickness during World War I) and his Pension Records x 3.

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