John Duncan Grant VC

Name: John Duncan Grant

Conflict: Tibet

Gazetted: January 24, 1905

Service: Army

John Duncan Grant VC
Medal group

Place/date of birth: Rurki, United Provinces, India/December 29, 1877

Rank when awarded VC (and later highest rank): Lieutenant (later Colonel)

Date of bravery: July 6, 1904

London Gazette citation:

On the occasion of the storming of the Gyantse Jong on 6th July, 1904, the storming Company, headed by Lieutenant Grant, on emerging from the cover of the village, had to advance up a bare, almost precipitous, rock-face, with little or no cover available, and under a heavy fire from the curtain, flanking towers on both sides of the curtain, and other buildings higher up the Jong. Showers of rocks and stones were at the time being hurled down the hillside by the enemy from above. One man could only go up at a time, crawling on hands and knees, to the breach in the curtain.

Lieutenant Grant, followed by Havildar Karbir Pun, 8th Gurkha Rifles, at once attempted to scale it, but on reaching near the top he was wounded, and hurled back, as was the Havildar who fell down the rock some 30 feet.

Regardless of their injuries they again attempted to scale the breach, and, covered by the fire of the men below, were successful in their object, the Havildar shooting one of the enemy on gaining the top. The successful issue of the assault was very greatly due to the splendid example shown by Lieutenant Grant and Havildar Karbir Pun.

The latter has been recommended for the Indian Order of Merit.

Click here to see full Gazette entry.

Other decorations: CB, DSO

Place/date of death: Tunbridge Wells, Kent; February 24, 1967

Grave/memorials: Tunbridge Wells Crematorium, Kent; Honours board and plaque at Cheltenham College, Gloucestershire; Plaque at Quetta Staff College, Pakistan

Origin of VC to the Lord Ashcroft collection: Purchased at auction, Morton & Eden, London, 2014

Current location of VC: Displayed on rotation at The Lord Ashcroft Gallery: Extraordinary Heroes exhibition, Imperial War Museum