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1542 Pte. John William Roy DCM (24th. Regt.)

Thought to have been born in Forfarshire (now Angus) in Scotland. Joined the army 8/8/1870 aged 17. Attested to the 24th. Regt. 13/8/1870.

He had a chequered army career, with bad conduct, drink related injuries, and eventually virtual incapacity due to syphilis although he did eventually reach the rank of Corporal. .

He suffered from malaria and was frequently in hospital. He was one of the patients in the hospital at Rorke's Drift. Awarded Distinguished Conduct Medal for Rorke's Drift. Appointed Corporal in November 1879, he received the DCM from Queen Victoria at Windsor Castle on 9 December 1879. Discharged due to ill heath in December 1880.

He emigrated to Australia, on board 'Roslin Castle' in 1883 aged 27.. The Sydney Herald of 15/10/1887 reported: "A grand Military Concert will shortly take place for the benefit of William Roy, late Corporal in HM's 24th Regiment of Foot, one of the heroes of Rorke's Drift. He is now in very sad circumstances, almost blind, and helpless."
The concert was held 27/10/1887. The Mayor of Sidney attended.

Another Press report stated: "Roy is now an invalided inmate of a New South Wales benevolent institution."

He died 30 May 1890 at Hunter Street, Parramatta of paralysis and natural decay aged 35 years 6 months. Occupation, baker. He is buried in an unmarked grave on 1st. June 1890 in Mays Hill Cemetery, Parramatta, Sydney, Australia. An effort is in underway to mark his grave.

For his actions he was awarded the Distinquished Conduct Medal by Queen Victoria in 9/12/1879 at Windsor Castle.