SERJEANT HUGH REID MCGROGAN
ROYAL GARRISON ARTILLERY
25TH APRIL 1918 AGE 20
BURIED: LIJSSENTHOEK MILITARY CEMETERY, BELGIUM
Twenty-year-old Serjeant Hugh McGrogan died of wounds in a Casualty Clearing Station in Lijssenthoek. Educated at Paisley Grammar School, McGrogan would have gone to Glasgow Provincial Training College had he not joined the Royal Garrison Artillery in July 1916 when he was eighteen. When he died two years later, he was a serjeant.
Born in Paisley, Hugh McGrogan was the only son of James and Margaret McGrogan. His father, who was a tailor, died in August 1916, the month after Hugh enlisted, so it was his mother who chose her son's inscription.
It comes from The Princess,Tennyson's long narrative, serio-comic poem about the education of women and their role in public life. The inscription comes from a beautiful four-verse song, a lament for "days that are no more". These are the first two verses:
Tears, idle tears, I know not what they mean,
Tears from the depth of some divine despair
Rise in the heart, and gather in the eyes,
In looking on the happy Autumn-fields,
And thinking of the days that are no more.
Fresh as the first beam glittering on a sail,
That brings our friends up from the underworld,
Sad as the last which reddens over one
That sinks with all we love below the verge;
So sad, so fresh, the days that are no more.
McGrogan served with the 263rd Siege Battery and was wounded as the Germans pushed forward in Belgium during their Spring Offensive.