Private John Rodger

Private John Anderson Rodger, 10th ( Service ) Battalion, Cameronians. He was killed in action , aged 21, in France on the 25th September 1915 on the first day of the Battle of Loos. He was born in Selkirk in 1894 and was the son of Matthew and Christina Rodger of General’s Bridge Lodge , Bowhill, Selkirk. Before enlisting he had been employed as a gardener.  He fell during the 15th ( Scottish ) Divisional attack on the main Loos defences which cost the very heavy Battalion casualties of  485 in killed wounded and missing. ( The Division took its objectives but lost nearly 50% of its strength ).He is commemorated on the Loos Memorial, Dud Corner, Loos, France. Before enlisting he had been employed as a gardener at Phillipshaugh, Selkirk. This day was the first time the Army had used gas and the photo shows troops advancing through a ghostly cloud of gas and smoke. The artist’s nightmarish illustration tries to depict an attack with the troops wearing their gas hoods.

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