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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Major Reginald GORDON, DSO MC

Sue Light

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I wonder if any of the LG experts [stebie et al] can find the citations for this officer. He was a doctor, who served during the war with the RGA, and was killed on 26 March 1918, as the result of an accident with a gun carriage. His CWGC entry is here:

CWGC Major Reginald Gordon

He was the father of Brigadier Barbara Gordon, Matron-in-Chief and Director of Army Nursing Services, 1968-73 - she was five when her father was killed. Grateful for any further information on Major Gordon.


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Officers Died:

Name: GORDON, Reginald Glegg

Regiment, Corps etc.: Royal Garrison Artillery

Battalion etc.:

Last name: Gordon

First name(s): Reginald Glegg

Initials: R G

Decoration: DSO


Date died: 26 March 1918

How died: Killed

Supplementary Notes: [Territorial]

His D.S.O. was a New Year's Honours - 1-1-1918, so no citation:

Maj. Richard Glegg Gordon, Lowland R.G.A.


(A bit of a difference of opinion on his name, presuming it is not a brother!)


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Thank you for that - the unit details are right, so probably an error with the name. There is a file that looks to be his [WO374/28120] so that should add something more. Let's hope TNA don't mislay officers' files in the renovations :unsure:


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Reginald Glegg Gordon, RGA

Born at Valparaiso, Chile, on 26 Sep 1878, the only son of David Stewart Ramsay Gordon of 118 Thirlestane Road, Edinburgh and his wife Jane, daughter of Robert Clegg of the Exchequer, Edinburgh

Educated at the Edinburgh Academy from 1893 to 1897 where he played on the school XV and XI.

Received an MB and ChB from the University of Edinburgh in 1903

In March 1903 he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the University Battery of the 1st City of Edinburgh Volunteer Artillery

Promoted Lieutenant, Feb 1904

Promoted Captain, July 1908

Transferred to the Unattached List in 1909

On 10 June 1909 at High Church, Inverness, he married Barbara Mackenzie, daughter of John Masson, and they had four children: Lesley Glegg, born 21 Sep 11; Alison Rose, born 5 March 1910; Barbara Masson, born 28 Jan 1913; and Jean, born 17 Oct 1915.

Was for a time, Resident Physcian at the Chricton Institution, Dumfries

Before the war he was Resident Physician, Royal Infirmary, Edinburgh

His address in 1914 was Lettoch, Killiecrankie, Perth

He joined the 6th Battalion, Black Watch in 1913 he was a Captain in the 6th Black Watch

Raised and trained the 2/1st City of Edinburgh (Lowland) Heavy Battery, RGA (TF) and served in France with the battery from May 1916.

On 21 May 1915 he was promoted to Major and given command of the battery.

Transferred to the Regulars in January 1917

Mentioned in Despatches, London Gazette of 14 Dec 1917

DSO in London Gazette of 7 Jan 1918 "for gallant and distinguished service in the field."

Accidentally killed on the road to Marieux on 25 March 1918 during the retreat from Cambrai. One source indicates that he fell to sleep in the saddle and fell to the ground, being crushed by a passing howitzer. At the time he was Officer Commanding, 12th Heavy Battery, R. G. A. Buried at Euston Road Cemetery, Colincamps.

There is a photo of him in the next to the last source (below). PM me with your email address is you would like a scan.

Sources: War Supplement to Edinburgh Academy Register; Edinburgh Academy Register, 1824-1914; DeRuvigney's Roll of Honour, Volume II; University of Edinburgh Roll of Honour, 1914-1919; War Diary of 12th Heavy Battery, RGA

Regards. Dick Flory

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  • 4 years later...
Guest woodworker

one year before he was killed, while on leave from his unit, Major R Glegg Gordon was godfather to my father. Because of the family relationship my father was given the name Gordon. Thus becoming Gordon Glegg. A family record that I have says "On the night of the 25th/26th March 1918, Major Reginald Glegg Gordon DSO was killed. During the darkness in the retreat from Cambrai he was half asleep with fatigue. His horse shied and threw him in front of one of the wheels of the guns and he was killed instantly."

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The unit details are right, so probably an error with the name.

His entry on page 253 of Part 2 of the Distinguished Service Order from 1 January 1916 to 12 June 1923 is very brief:

GORDON, Reginald Clegg (gazetted as Richard Glegg GORDON) (DSO L.G. 1.1.18) Major, Lowland R.G.A. He was killed in action 26.3.18.

His entry on page 320 of Honour the Officers is listed as GORDON Reginald Clegg - Major - date of DSO - L.G. 1.1.18 - NYHL page 21.

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