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David Meldrum Langlands

60526 Private

16th Battalion, Welsh Regiment, 115th Infantry Brigade, 38th (Welsh) Division

Age: 19

Date of Death: 27.8.17

Buried: Tyne Cot Memorial Panel 93 to 94

Family History: Son of James and Emily Langlands, 9 Rae Street, Stenhousemuir. Before enlisting in January 1917, he worked in his fathers drapery business on Main Street, Stenhousemuir.

The action leading to his death

The 38th (Welsh) Division was engaged in the Third Battle of Ypres which had been going on since 31 July 1917. On the 19 August the Division was in the rest area at Proven and on the 20 August relieved the 20th Division, who had taken Langemarck. The line ran through White Trench and Bear Trench, with Eagle Trench being held by the Germans.

(Linesman Map showing Eagle Trench)

On the 27 August, in conjunction with a larger attack on their right, at 1.55pm the 16th Battalion, made an assault on Eagle Trench. The attack went in behind a creeping barrage. The weather which had been reasonably good in the morning deteriorated in the afternoon so that men, who had been lying in shell holes which had gradually filled with water, found it difficult to get out and keeping up with the barrage. The barrage began to get away from them and they became exposed to German machine gun fire from the direction of Pheasant Farm and were unable to reach their objective. The Division remained in the line until 11 September when they were relieved by the 20th Division.

In a letter to David’s father Corporal R B Parker wrote that David had been wounded in the arm and was making his way to the Regimental Aid Post when he and others were caught in a shell explosion. He added that David was one of the ‘nicest boys he had met’ and that he ‘admired his cool ways, as he had not seen much fighting previously. As a friend of your son, I write to express my sympathy with you and all concerned.

Medals Awarded

The British War Medal, Victory Medal.

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