1918-2008: Ninety Years of Remembrance

Soldier Record

John Melville

Contributed by: Ron Hay, on 2008-11-09

John Philip Berry Melville
Rank
First Name John
Surname Melville
Year of Birth 1893
Year of Death 1916
Regiment Royal Warwickshire Fusiliers
Place of Wartime Residence Perth, Perth and Kinross

John's Story

Lance Corporal John Melville, No. 267272, served with 2/7 Battalion the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. He was the brother of my maternal grandmother, Elizabeth Nicholl Laing nee Melville. He enlisted into the Highland Cyclist Battalion in Perth, probably late 1913 early 1914.

On 23 May1916 he sent a postcard to my grandmother: "My Dear Ella, Just to let you know that I arrived in France alright. Am having splendid weather and a good time. Trusting this will find you well, With love from John". The postcard showed a photo of the regimental cap badge. John died shortly afterwards at the Battle of the Somme.

Official records show: 'Melville John enlisted Perth 267272 L/cpl, killed in action France & Flanders 19.7.16 formerly 2020 Highland Cyclist Battn.'

I was unable to find literature on that Battalion but it is believed to have sprung from the Perthshire Rifles. The Battle of the Somme commenced on 1Jul 1916 and it is believed John died during hostilities at Delville Wood (15 Jul-23 Sep). As his body was never identified, he has no known grave but he is commemorated with others of his Regiment in the Loos Memorial (France) between panels 22-25. His Army records were destroyed during enemy action in WW2.

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