Private Frank McTavish

Private Frank McTavish, 1st/4th ( Border ) Battalion, Kings Own Scottish Borderers. He was killed in action at Gallipoli, aged 29, on the 12th July 1915 during the ” Charge” on the Turkish trenches at Achi Baba Nullah. He had been born in Fogo, Berwickshire and was the son of John and Margaret McTavish of Manse Cottage, Cavers. He had been working as a forester when he enlisted at Galashiels in September 1914 and landed with his Battalion on Gallipoli in June 1915. He is commemorated on the Helles Memorial, Helles, Gallipoli, Turkey.12th July became known as the ” Black day of the Borders” as out of the over 700 Officers and Other Ranks who began the attack on 70 unwounded men answered evening roll call. Few Border towns and villages had not lost at least one of their sons that fateful day. Both Colonel McNeile from Bowden and his Adjutant Captain Lang from Newstead were posted missing presumed killed ( The author’s Great Uncle Corporal Jim Murray from Coldstream was wounded and spent 6 weeks in hospital in Alexandria before returning to his comrades on the Peninsula ). The first photo shows Achi Baba, the objective of the attack, marked with a cross. This “hill” dominated the battlefield and was never captured. The second shows the Borderers going “over the top” at Gallipoli and the third shows the battlefield in 1922.

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