Julie Scarrott messaged me recently, commenting, ” I noticed that John Hunt Stirling is not listed on the WW1 Blantyre Memorial.”
John Hunt Stirling was born in Mossgiel, Blantyre on 10th November 1894 to John Stirling and his wife Nancy [ nee Hunt ]. He joined the London Scottish Regiment and later the Royal Field Artillery in 57th Battery , 45th Brigade as a 2nd Lieutenant and when WW1 was underway, was sent to the front .
John had an affair with a woman in London and she became pregnant with his child. He came back to London for a home visit during August 1917, probably because his child was due to be born about that time. He returned to Ypres on 21st August. The following day a poisonous gas shell exploded near him at Birr Cross Roads and he was hit in the leg with shrapnel, unable to move , as the gas descended upon him . He was rescued and taken to Canadian Clearing Station number 2 and there he drew his last breath. Remarkably ,on the very same day John died, his daughter was born! He was just twenty two years old .
He is buried in Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery and of course is yet another Blantyre man who needs to be remembered.