Regiment: Royal Garrison Artillery, 4th Highland Mountain Brigade
Rank & Number: Gunner,
Born: 28 August 1885; Railway Buildings, Fairlie
Died: 23 August 1916; Harley Hill Hospital,
of Archibald, Donald, Duncan, Hugh and James Campbell
born 28 Aug 1885 in Railway Buildings, Fairlie, to parents John, a railway
watchman, and Sarah McLachlan (who married in Appin
on 26 Oct 1881).
He died of pneumonia on 23 Aug 1916 in Harley Hill Hospital, Catterick,
while completing training with the Bute Mountain Battery. He is buried in Largs
Cemetery (inscription reads "2756 Gunner J. Campbell;
Royal Garrison Artillery; 23 August 1916, Age 34; Safe in the arms of Jesus,
Safe on His gentle breast"), and commemorated on
Fairlie War Memorial.
In the 1891 Census, John, aged 5, is living Railway Buildings, Fairlie
with parents John (35, b. Ardnamurchan, night
watchman) and Sarah (29, b. Appin) and siblings Edward (7), Archibald (3)
and Duncan (9m)
In the 1901 Census, he is aged 15 and a railway clerk, living Railway
Buildings, Fairlie with parents John (43, railway
signalman) and Sarah (40), and siblings Edward (18, ticket collector), Archibald (13),
Duncan (11), Hugh (9), Sarah (6), Donald (4),
James F (3) and Christina (1)
In the 1911 Census,
aged 25 and a railway clerk, he is living Railway Buildings, Fairlie with parents John (53, railway signalman) and Sarah (49, m 29 years, 11 children, 10
living), and siblings Duncan (20,
barman), Donald (15, grocer’s
messenger), James F (12), Andrew W (9)
and Charles (6)
There is no medal index card as he died during training and didn’t
from the Largs & Millport Weekly News:-
13 May 1916 A splendid record for
enlistment, and certainly the record for Fairlie, is provided by the family of
Mr. John Campbell, Railway Buildings.
Three sons are serving with the British Army, one with the Canadian
forces, while a son-in-law is serving with the Italian army. In addition, two sons have enlisted under the
Derby Scheme and are waiting to be called up, while a seventh son has been
rejected three times.
2 Sep 1916 Deaths: Campbell – At Harley Hill
Hospital, Catterick on the 23rd August, 1916, Gunner John Campbell, Bute
Mountain Battery, aged 30 years, second son of John and Sarah Campbell,
Had we but seen him at his last, Or watched his dying breath,
Or heard the last sigh of his heart, Or held his aching head,
Our hearts, we think, would not have felt, Such bitterness or grief,
But God has ordered otherwise, And now he rests in peace.
Inserted by his Father, Mother and
2 September 1916
Toll Of War; Military Funeral; Sudden Death, Gunner
John Campbell: The sudden
death of Gunner John Campbell, son of Mr John Campbell, Railway Buildings,
Fairlie, evoked regret throughout the village and sympathy is everywhere
expressed for the sorrowing parents and relatives. The deceased, who was of a most amiable
disposition, and greatly respected, some time ago joined the Bute Mountain
Battery and, while completing his training at Catterick Camp, contracted the
disease which ultimately proved fatal.
The body was brought home for interment and
on arriving at Fairlie Station on Friday was conveyed to the Parish Church
here. The coffin was wrapped in the
Union Jack, and surrounded with a large number of floral tributes.
In the afternoon a memorial service was held
in the church, conducted by the Rev. Mr. Somerville, assisted by the Rev. Mr. Gollan. Amongst the large congregation that assembled
was a detachment of soldiers from Fort Matilda, who came to pay a last token of
respect to their dead comrade in arms.
At the close of the service, a funeral procession was formed and
preceded by a military piper who rendered music appropriate to the occasion,
the carriage proceeded to Largs Cemetery for interment. After a short religious service, a firing
parade fired a salute over the grave, and the bugler sounded the last post.
9 September 1916
Toll of War: Gunner John Campbell of the Bute
Mountain Battery, who, as reported last week, died of pneumonia in hospital at
the camp in Richmond, and whose remains were interred with military honours
from his parents’ home at Fairlie on Friday, 23rd August.
As supplementary to our report of the
military funeral given to Gr. Campbell, published last week, it may be
mentioned that the firing party was got through the agency of the Dowager
Countess of Glasgow, and by the kindness of Lt.-Col. Agnew, R.S.F., Fort
1917 In Memoriam: In loving memory of Gunner John Campbell, Bute Mountain Battery, who
died in hospital at Catterick Camp, 23 August 1916.
In health and strength he left his home, Not
thinking death was near,
It pleased the Lord to bid him come, In his
presence to appear,
The hardest part is yet to come, When the
And we miss amongst the cheering crowd, The
face of him we mourn.
by his sorrowing parents, sister and brothers, Railway Buildings, Fairlie.
24 August 1918 In Memoriam: In loving memory of Gunner John
Campbell, Bute Mountain Battery, who died in hospital at Catterick Camp, 23rd
Two years have passed since that sad day,
When our dear son was called away;
We loved him then, we love him still, Forget him! No, we never will.
This day brings back to memory, Our dear one
gone to rest;
And those who think of him today, Are those
who loved him best.
by his sorrowing parents, sister and brothers, Railway Buildings, Fairlie
23 August 1919 In Memoriam: In loving memory of Gunner John Campbell, Bute Mountain Battery, who
died in hospital at Catterick Camp, 23rd August, 1916.
Not dead to us who loved him, Not lost, but
He lives with us in memory still, And will
Thou canst not come to us again, But we
shall go to thee,
When God’s bright day of glory breaks, And
earth’s night shadows flee.
by his sorrowing parents, sisters and brothers, Railway Buildings, Fairlie