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  • Christina Drummond

Captain Napier Charles Gordon Cameron, 1st Battalion, the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders

Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 1914, Captain Napier Charles Gordon Cameron. 1st Battalion, the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders, was killed in action at the Aisne on the Western Front.

Born in Gibraltar, he was the youngest son of General Sir William Gordon Cameron, GCB, of Nea House, Christchurch, who had an extensive and distinguished career, including service in the Crimean War. Captain Napier joined Strathcona’s Horse in 1900; in 1901 he received a commission in the Scottish Horse. and served with them in the South African war. He was wounded, Mentioned in Despatches, and received the Queen’s Medal with Four Clasps. In June of 1902 he was gazetted to the Northumberland Fusiliers, and when they disbanded six years later, he obtained a commission in the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders. He also learned to fly, and obtained his Flying Certificate at Brooklands in 1913.

Shortly after the outbreak of the Great War he was promoted to Captain. On the 14th of September, 1914, Captain Cameron was wounded during the Battle of the Aisne. He was in and out of consciousness, and at one point played dead as German soldiers removed his belt, claymore and revolver. Two days later he was found by some of his own men, and once it was dark they set out to return to the regiment. On the way they heard someone calling for help – despite his own wounds, Captain Cameron took a private with him and rescued an officer of the Black Watch, bringing him to safety despite heavy gunfire. Sadly ten days later he lost his own life on the Aisne. He is buried in the Bourg-et-Comin Communal Cemetery, Department de l’Aisne, in Picardy, France.

Napier, from Countesswells in Aberdeenshire, was 37 years old and had been married for less than a year; his only child, a daughter, was born three months after his death.

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