McBain, John Mortimer
Rank: 2nd Lieutenant
Regiment: 231st Brigade, Royal Field Artillery
Biography: Son of John McBain, C.A. ; born Aberdeen, 6 October 1895 ; educated Aberdeen Grammar School ; left the School as Dux and Gold Medallist, 1913 ; took a high place in the Bursary Competition and studied in the Faculty of Arts from 1913-15 with a view to entering the Indian Civil Service. Short though his career was, he showed himself both a brilliant and promising scholar and a keen sportsman. As a class-fellow wrote : "In his first year at 'King's' . . . he at once became a marked man, for his perfect blending of work and play, of social and scholastic duties". McBain was a member of the Edinburgh University O.T.C. and was gazetted to the R.F.A. in August 1915. He served at home until December 1915 when he went to France, being attached first to the 54th (Howitzer) and was transferred later to the 231st Brigade, R.F.A. On 1 July 1916, when the great attack began he was acting as liaison officer to the infantry in the front line near Gommecourt ; when last seen he was running a telephone wire over to newly-captured trenches. McBain was reported missing, then as severely wounded and taken prisoner. He died in a German Military Hospital at Vraucourt, 9 July 1916. His brother-officers and the men under him have testified to the enthusiasm and cheerfulness which characterized his work as an officer. One of his party of telephonists afterwards wrote to his C.O. "Later on I crawled out for water and looked for him, but he and the reel of wire had disappeared, so I expect he had most gallantly gone on running the wire . . . he was a good officer and a true Scottish gentleman".
Date of Death: 09 July 1916
Burial Details: Buried at Vaulx Hill Cemetery, Vaulx-Vraucourt, Plot 1, Row C, Grave 11.
Publication: Roll of Service, edited by Mabel Desborough Allardyce. Published 1921.
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