b. 30/01/1892 Halling, Kent. d. 09/08/1918 Morlancourt, France.
Son of William John and Sarah Ann Harris of Rochester. He was 26 years old, and a serjeant in the 6th Battalion, The Queen's Own Royal West Kent Regiment, British Army during the First World War. On 9 August 1918 at Morlancourt, France, he performed the deeds for which he was awarded the Victoria Cross.
For most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty in attack when the advance was much impeded by hostile machine guns concealed in crops and shell-holes. Sjt. Harris led his section against one of these, capturing it and killing seven of the enemy.
Later, on two successive occasions, he attacked single-handed two enemy machine guns which were causing heavy casualties and holding up the advance. He captured the first gun and killed the crew, but was himself killed when attacking the second one. It was largely due to the great courage and initiative of this gallant N.C.O. that the advance of the battalion was continued without delay and undue casualties. Throughout the operations he showed a total disregard for his own personal safety, and set a magnificent example to all ranks.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: QUEEN'S OWN ROYAL KENT RGT, MAIDSTONE, KENT
BURIAL PLACE: DERNANCOURT CEMETERY, FRANCE.
Thomas Harris' VC and MM on display at the Queens Own West Kent Regimental Museum, Maidstone, Kent
Cemetery Plan courtesy of Kevin Brazier
PLOT VIII, ROW J, GRAVE 20
Thomas Harris Close, Halling, Kent
Please note the medal card, attestation paper and original citation documents courtesy of Mark Sanders
Woolwich Barracks (Terry Hissey)