MR JAMES DRYSDALE WILSON.One of the few survivors of the Crimean war, James Drysdale Wilson, of Christchurch, passed peacefully away to his rest on Friday afternoon, at the age of 85 years.
Mr Wilson had been ailing for the past six months and went into hospital about two months ago for the purpose of undergoing an operation, but owing to the weak state of his health, the doctors postponed an operation.
Few persons have had a more adventurous and romantic career than has the late veteran. He was born in Edinburgh, and in 1851 he joined the 10th Royal Hussars, and a year later left, with his regiment for India, where he saw a "bit of scrimmaging." When rumours of a war with Russia were current he left with two of his companions for the Crimea. They arrived there on the eve of the battle of Balaclava. After seeing further service Mr Wilson became orderly to General Wyndham, commandant of Sevastopol.
On peace being declared Mr Wilson returned to England, and having three brothers already in New Zealand he decided to join them. He arrived in Christchurch in 1859, and remained here till his death.
Mr Wilson possessed three medals for service in India, Crimea, and Turkey.
On September 10th, 1912, Mr Wilson was one of the parties in a romantic wedding in Christchurch, when, at the age of 82 years, be married Miss Graham Sime, who was seven years his junior.
Deceased leaves two daughters, who reside in Wellington, and a son, who lives in Auckland. Mr Wilson was a leading member of the Veterans' Association.
The remains of deceased were laid to rest in the Addington Cemetery yesterday with military honours. The route of the funeral procession was lined with many hundreds of people who wished to pay their last respects to a brave man, and the scene at the graveside was an impressive one.
The troops who were to form the escort assembled at the King Edward Barracks at 2.30, and were representative of all branches of the service. The men of the E Battery, with the gun carriage, were in charge of Farrier-Sergeant Stokes; Captain Northcote represented the Defence Department; Lieutenant Wilkie was in command of the Territorial detachment, and Sergeant Page in charge of the firing party, which was provided by the 1st (Canterbury) Regiment.
A good squad of the Veterans were also in attendance, under Lieutenant Timbrell, the President of the Association, and the C.Y.C. Band headed the procession.
The coffin, on the gun carriage and covered with the Union Jack was taken by way of the East and South belts, down Selwyn street to the Cemetery. The Rev. P. J. Cocks the burial service, and at its conclusion the three volleys were fired, and the "Last Post" blown by the buglers of the 1st Regiment.
Press, Volume LI, Issue 15334, 19 July 1915, Page 3
WILSON - on 10 July at 42 Brougham St, Sydenham, Jane, dearly loved wife of James Drysdale Wilson, & loving mother of J.D.Wilson, & M.J.White of Wellington, also E.A.Jenkins, of this city, aged 69.