Topic: David McClelland

Topic type:

A soldier of the Great War killed in action in near Ypres.

McClelland, D

Private David McClelland - 60971  

David was born at Lakeside on 27th August 1884, son of  David and Elizabeth McClelland. Before enlisting was he was farming in partnership with his brothers at Southbridge, where he had resided most of his life. He was described as being very popular in the district. He was 5ft 4 ½ in tall with a medium complexion, blue eyes and brown hair.

He enlisted at Christchurch on 31st May 1917 and was assigned to C Company, 31st Reinforcements, Canterbury Infantry Regiment. Whilst in camp he overstayed his leave on 17 Sept 1917 and forfeited 9 day’s pay. He embarked on board the Tahiti from Wellington on 16th November 1917 and arrived in Liverpool on 7th Jan 1918. Within a month he was sent to Tidworth Hospital sick on 6th February and then into quarantine when he was diagnosed the very contagious Rubella  ie “German Measles”. He was finally released to march into Sling Camp on 2nd March and left from there for France on 20th March. He arrived in Etaples four days later and, like most reinforcements at that time, was attached to an Entrenching Battalion. He joined No 2 Entrenching Battalion in the field on 28th March and was killed in action on 8th May 1918, aged 33. His obituary notes that he had been in the firing line just a month when he met his death. He was buried along with James Lowe and five other soldiers from the Entrenching battalion in Klein-Vierstraat Cemetery, 6km south of Ypres. In New Zealand David is remembered on the Southbridge Plaque of the Ellesmere County War Memorial and the Southbridge School Roll of Honour.


CWGC Cemetery locale history: Klein-Vierstraat British Cemetery is located 6 Kms south-west of Ieper town centre.The village of Kemmel and the adjoining hill, Mont Kemmel, were the scene of fierce fighting in the latter half of April 1918, in which both Commonwealth and French forces were engaged. The cemetery was begun in January 1917 and Plots I to III were made by field ambulances and fighting units before the middle of January 1918. Plot IV was begun in April 1918. After the Armistice, graves were brought into Plot I, Row H, and Plots IV to VII, from two smaller cemeteries (FERME HENRI PATTYN-VANLAERES, Poperinghe and MONT-VIDAIGNE MILITARY CEMETERY, Westoutre) and from the battlefields of Dikkebus, Loker and Kemmel. Klein-Vierstraat British Cemetery now contains 804 First World War burials, 109 of them unidentified. The cemetery was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

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David McClelland

First Names:David
Last Name:McClelland
Date of Birth:27 August 1884
Place of Birth:Lakeside
Date of Death:8 May 1918
Place of Death:Ypres, Belgium
Memorial or Cemetery:Klein-Vierstraat British Cemetery
Age at death:33
User Name:Selwyn Library
Occupation before enlisting:Farmer
Marital Status:Single
Nominal Roll:75/11
Regiment or Service:New Zealand Entrenching Battalion
Country:New Zealand
Enlistment details:31st May 1917
Parents or Next of Kin:Son of David and Eliza McClelland, of Southbridge, Canterbury.
Service Number:60971
Rank last held:Private
Embarkation:16 November 1917
Place of Embarkation:Wellington
Theatres of War:Western Front
Cause of Death:Killed in action