1918-2008: Ninety Years of Remembrance

Soldier Record

James McKenzie

Contributed by: Mike Ross, on 2008-11-02

James Gordon McKenzie
First Name James
Surname McKenzie
Year of Birth 1887
Year of Death 1916
Regiment Scots Guards
Place of Wartime Residence Knockando, Moray

James's Story

James Gordon McKenzie was born on 1 May 1887 at the farm of Lagavaich, Glenlivet, to Alexander and Helen McKenzie. He was youngest of five children, having three sisters (Jane, Helen, and Agnes) and one brother (Alexander). The family lived at Lagavaich until 1901 when they moved to Tomindougle, Blacksboat, Knockando. Prior to enlisting in 1915, James served with the Lanarkshire Police. After completing basic training at the Guards Depot at Caterham, James left Britain for the Western Front on 5 October 1915. He survived life in the trenches for just over a year, including the majority of the Somme campaign. Wounded in October 1916 James succumbed to septicaemia on 6 November 1916 whilst at the No.1 South African Hospital based in Abbeville. My great Grandmother (James' sister) kept his medals displayed in her bedroom until her death. However, the closest personal link I have to James is my grandmother's memory of being a small child held aloft by a large man in a uniform. My Grandmother, who had been sitting in an improvised play-pen next to the open fire in the farm kitchen, recalled James' words to her mother as "You cannae leave the bairn in there". Like so many others James did not return and did not have his own offspring to survive him. The words my grandmother remembered from her childhood and the photograph of the man in uniform are the only reminders of the person whose life was lost.

Other memories

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