b. 16/10/1857 Lowestoft, Suffolk. d. 20/02/1935 Lowestoft, Suffolk.
DATE OF EM ACTION: 19-21/10/1922 North Scroby Sands, Suffolk.
John was one of sixteen children born to Thompson John and Rachel Swan (nee Hovell) on 16th October 1857 in Lowestoft, Suffolk. John was the eldest of their children. He was baptised on 6th December 1857 in Lowestoft. On 10th January 1880 he married Eleanor Manning at St Margaret’s Church, Lowestoft. He and Eleanor would have seven children of their own. He became the Coxswain of the Lowestoft Lifeboat, and would be recognised for his gallantry several times. He was awarded the RNLI Silver Medal in rescuing the crew of nine hands of the minesweeper HMS Condor which was totally wrecked off the Newcombe Sands in a very heavy sea on 22 November 1914. Four years later, he was awarded a second Silver Medal for the rescue of nine from HM Sloop Pomona which was wrecked in a whole gale and very heavy sea on 30 September 1918. He would finally receive the Gold Medal for rescuing 24 men and a black kitten when on service to the steamer Hopelyn wrecked on North Scroby Sands on 19/21 October 1922. In 1924, he was one of eight surviving Gold Medallists who were granted an audience with King George V at Buckingham Palace, and they were all to receive the EGM. Swan died aged 77 on 20th February 1935 in Lowestoft.
No official citation.
BURIAL LOCATION: LOWESTOFT CEMETERY, LOWESTOFT, SUFFOLK.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: UNKNOWN.