Sergeant John Balfour, D.C.M.

Sergeant John Brown Balfour, D.C.M., 51st Battalion, Machine Gun Corps ( Infantry ). He died from wounds in France, aged 26, on the 21st July 1918. He had been born in Southdean and was the son of Jane and the late William Balfour of Westerhouses Farm, Southdean. He had played rugby for Jedforest and had worked on the family farm before enlisting, originally, in the Seaforth Highlanders. His Distinguished Conduct Medal citation reads ” For Conspicuous Gallantry and Devotion to Duty. Although three times buried by shellfire and severely wounded in the head he continued to fire his gun, remaining at his post until the enemy attack was repulsed “. He is buried in St Martin-d’Ablois Communal Cemetery, Marne, France where his Headstone is inscribed ” Until The day Dawn And the Shadows Flee Away”. The M.G.C. used the Vickers Mk11 water cooled gun in both defensive and offensive roles.

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