But Canada was not Ireland, and by aged 6, John and parents were off back to Northern Ireland. This time the family settled some 60 miles east of Ulster at a place called Lisburn.
John attended public school, an academical institution and then Queens College (forerunner of Queens University) at Belfast. By the time he finished at Queens, he would graduate head of his class, with first class honours in medicine. More schooling came, back in England with three degrees coming his way from Cambridge and Liverpool. Degrees were now his for bachelors of medicine, surgery and obstetrics. Appointments in the pathology came his way from Queens and the School for Medicine in Liverpool and other hospitals in Belfast.
In 1911, at age 26, John was living in Liverpool, according to the England and Wales census. That year he wrote the exams to enter the British India Army, and of all recruits was yet again the first of the class. He was commissioned a Lieutenant and about to be sent off to India, but was instead seconded back to Queens University for further research duties at the Liverpool School for Tropical Diseases.
Near year's end he switched over to the 37th Dogras, a British Indian Army infantry regiment. His duties there would be as the Regimental Medical Officer. (Cap badge and collar dog shown above)
In October of 1915 John's 37th was part of the Indian Expeditionary Force and by the 29th he would leave Karachi aboard the small British Indian Steamer Muttra to move to the front lines.
The steamer was built to only carry 27 Ist class passengers and 1982 deck passengers. But on this trip it carried not only his unit but also the complete 97th Infantry and his unit's full contingency of mules. It was said to be very overloaded...and ripe for disaster. Such almost came 3 times en-route, but I'll bring you that and more... much more ... on Sunday.