Sgt. Samuel McGaw – 1838-1878
Remembrance service to commemorate 137 years of the death of Sergeant Samuel McGaw VC of the Black Watch Regiment
By Margaret Sheard….
Video by Chris Elliott….
A very poignant event took place at the Old British Cemetery on Wednesday 22nd July to pay respects to Sergeant Samuel McGaw VC of the Black Watch 42nd Regiment of Foot on the occasion of the 137th anniversary of his death during deployment in Cyprus. Sgt McGaw is buried in the Old British Cemetery along with 4 other members of the Black Watch who succumbed to the heat or malaria in 1878 – Private George Marr, Private James McDonald, Private Steven Troubridge and Private James Barrie.
The Royal British Legion Kyrenia Branch organised the event and thanks must be given to Major Brian Thomas BEM (Ret’d) and his team of supporters who had spent time to ensure that the Old British Cemetery was looking its best for the occasion.
Attending the service were members of the Black Watch 3rd Battalion – The Royal Regiment of Scotland who are currently serving with Op Tosca 22 at Ledra Palace where they have completed 4 months of their 6 month tour of duty and they were delighted to be able to take part in this remembrance service for one of their past very colourful characters.
The current Padre, Phillip Paterson, was joined by Revd Wendy Hough from St Andrew’s Church, Kyrenia and together they conducted the service of respect which had been organised by the RSM of the Black Watch, WO1 Paddy Marshall. A tribute was given by C. Sgt. Currie followed by a song “The Stoutest Man in the Forty Twa”.
There then followed the laying of a wreath at Sgt. McGaw’s grave and the graves of the 4 other soldiers of the Black Watch nearby. The Last Post and Reveille were given by Drummer L.Cpl. Sean McKenna and the Lament by Piper Pte John Murdoch which was followed by one minute’s silence. The service ended with the Benediction by the Padre.
We have written previously on cyprusscene about Sgt McGaw and for those who may like to view this article – Cyprus 1878 – The Black Watch Were Here – click here
As this was such a special occasion we decided to record this on video and this is shown below.