b. 03/05/1821 Musselburgh, Scotland. d. 01/12/1873 Inveresk. East Lothian, Scotland.
John Grieve (1821-1873) was born on the 3rd May 1821 in Musselburgh, Scotland, and sadly little is known about his life other than his military career. As a young man he enlisted with the 2nd Dragoons (Royal Scots Greys) and would rise to the rank of Sergeant Major during the Crimean War.
On 25th October 1854, Sergeant Major Grieve was involved in the Battle of Balaclava when during the heavy cavalry charge, he saved the life of an Officer who was surrounded by Russian cavalry. He gallantly rode to his rescue and cut off the head of one of the Russians, disabled another and dispersed the others.
Grieve was awarded the VC (London Gazette 24th February 1857) and was one of the 62 men who lined up in Hyde Park for the first investiture by Queen Victoria on 26th June 1857. Following his investiture, Grieve rose through the ranks further, from Cornet, Adjutant and finally Lieutenant in 1863. He then became Adjutant in the 2nd Dragoons until 1865. Grieve died on 1st December 1873 in Inveresk, East Lothian, Scotland and was buried in the local churchyard of St Michael’s. His Victoria Cross is held by the Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: ART GALLERY OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA, ADELAIDE.
BURIAL PLACE: ST MICHAELS CHURCHYARD, INVERESK, SCOTLAND.
Kevin Brazier – Image of Grieve’s gravestone.
Art Gallery of South Australia – Image of Grieve’s medal group.