John Henry Purcell joined the army at Pembroke on 23 March 1917 and gave his address as Bower Cottage, Lower Park Road, Tenby, but on his papers this was later changed to Supply Stores, Cradley, Herefordshire. On enlistment he gave his occupation as Bookstall Clerk and age as 24 years and stated he was a Wesleyan meothodist. He underwent training at the Army Service Corps Depot at Grove Park in March 1917. On 29 April he embarked for Durban and on his arrival in India he was posted to a Reinfocement Camp where he was employed on “general camp duties.” He re-embarked on the Transport Ship Empress of Britain for Bombay, from where he changed ships and sailed on the HT Elephanta bound for Basra in Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq). Here he was posted to 730 MT Coy on 28th August as a Ford motor driver.
On 27st January 1918 he joined the Dunsterville Column at Baghdad which was mounting a force into South Russia to stem the Russian Revolution.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission