Private William Deans

Private William Romanes Deans, 4th Regiment,( South African Scottish), South African Infantry. He was killed in action in France, aged 21, on the 12th October 1916 and is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, Somme, France. He had been born in Heidelberg, South Africa and was the son of John and Elizabeth Deans of Bethal, Transvaal, South Africa and the Grandson of William Romanes of Croft Street, Galashiels. He had been farming when he enlisted in December 1915 joining his Regiment in France in August 1916. He fell in another attempt to capture the infamous Bute de Warlencourt. The attack was orchestrated by the 9th (Scottish) Division of which the South Africans were part. The attack could make no progress against in the face of heavy machine gun fire and the failure of the artillery to suppress the German defences. By Autumn ground conditions were very poor as can be seen from the photos and any sort of movement was very difficult. ( His brother John also fell during the War – see above ).

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