THE nephew of a man who served as Rosyth’s town engineer have been honouring his sacrifice a century after his death in the First World War.
Captain William Lennox Tod, of the 15th battalion of the Royal Scots, tragically lost his life during the Battle of Arras and his family decided to mark the occasion by paying their respects at his gravestone in France.
After serving an apprenticeship, Willie Tod was appointed by Dunfermline Town Council as an assistant engineer, responsible for town planning in Rosyth.
He then worked in West Fife for a year before volunteering for the Royal Scots as soon as war broke out.
His nephew, John Macgill, who lay a poppy on his grave at Étaples Military Cemetery, near Boulogne, said: “It was remarkably moving to visit his grave for the first time.
“Willie’s grave lies between those of an officer in the Royal Artillery and a Gordon Highlander. I am very glad that I was able to honour his memory.”
According to Poppy Scotland, nearly one in three casualties at the Battle of Arras were Scots. Willie was wounded on the first day of the battle but he died 20 days later on April 29, 1917, after surgeons fought to save his life by amputating his leg.
Willie was the only officer in his company to survive the Battle of the Somme in July 2016, only to be killed the following year, just aged 29.
His Colonel later described Willie as “calm and cool at all times, especially in danger” and “invariably cheery”.