Rank or Title
Date of Birth
Date of Death
20 Sep 1915
War time / or Pre War occupation
Place of Birth
World War I Address
Place of Death
War Memorial Location
Soldier or Civilian
Rifleman Peter Murdoch, 2634, D Company, 17th Battalion London Regiment, died on September 27th, 1915, from wounds sustained in action in Flanders.
He was a member of a Scottish family that had come to Luton from Falkirk around 1906-7, and was the first member of his platoon to be killed. He was aged 20.
A nephew, a private in the same battalion, broke the news of his death to parents Peter and Annie Murdoch, of 9 Conway Road, Luton. He wrote: "It is with deep regret that I have to write this letter, and it will be the most painful and heartbreaking period of my life so far in having to tell you in these few words of Peter's death, so I hope you will accept this note in the way it is written, as sending you the heartfelt sympathy of all the boys here, and who are greatly upset over it all. I cannot express in words how it all happened and how we all feel now. I have lost something of myself, and all the boys are heartbroken. I wish God had spared him, my dear aunt and uncle.
"The dear boy was shot in the head by a machine gun, and on the doctor seeing to him he said it was touch and go, and after doing all possible he was removed to hospital, where he has since died of his wounds. Dear old Peter was cheerful to the end, and showed all the courage one could show. May God console you in your loss, and may you accept the sympathy of us all here."
Pte Murdoch had been an apprentice in the pattern shop at Diamond Foundry under his father. His cousin who wrote the sad news was in the office there.
He came to Luton with his parents nearly nine years earlier and attended Dunstable Road School and then evening classes at the Modern School. Pte Murdoch was one of Luton's first Boy Scouts, being associated in the inauguration of the movement with Noel Hayward and Victor Brown.
He also attended Bury Park Congregational Church, where his father was one of the deacons, and was a member of the tennis, swimming and bowling clubs at the Diamond Foundry.