Afghanistan Medal 1878-80, 2 bars, Charasia, Kabul, 1081 Private William Burns, 67th Regiment of Foot. With copy service papers.
William Burns was born during 1846 in Strokestown, Roscommon, Ireland to John and Bridget Burns.
He enlisted for service at the age of 18 on 3rd November 1863 as a volunteer with the Roscommon Militia, before joining the 67th Regiment on 12th January 1865.
He first saw service in Hong Kong, and the Cape of Good Hope in 1865, then saw a lot of service in Burma, India and Afghanistan with the regiment.
He had married his wife Mary Cureen on 12th March 1867 in Dungarvan, Kilkenny. It appears she went overseas with him on service as their first Daughter Margaret was born in India during 1871, followed by another daughter Bridget during 1875 in Thayetmo, India and his son William Henry Patrick born on 12th December 1878 in Bangalore, Karnataka, India.
During his service he was promoted on 16th September 1868 to Corporal and on 31st October 1872 to the rank of Sergeant.
However 5 years later he was for some reason reduced to Private as of 20th November 1877 being sentenced to imprisonment for 14 days, later being imprisoned on 26th December 1881 to 11th April 1882, an unusually lengthy term for a soldier, presumably for something serious.
He went into the Afghanistan War of 1878-80 with the regiment as a 15 year veteran and former Sergeant but served as a Private.
During the war the 67th Foot was on the advance to take Kabul when it took part first in the Battle of Charasia on 6th October 1879 when the force of 3,800 men fought a 12,000 strong Afghan army being victorious.
They then went on to Kabul taking part in the Siege of the Sherpur Cantonment in December 1879.
He remained a Private and was discharged at the age of 40 during November 1885, but did not qualify for a Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, due to a few lapses in his good conduct during his long career.
By 1911 he was living in Kent until his wife of 47 years died in Eltham, Kent during January 1915, and he followed when he died in Folkestone, Kent, during December 1916 aged 70.