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24th Foot, Colour Sergeant Bourne Defending with Bayonet, No. 2
Born in Balcombe, Sussex, England on 27 April 1855, Frank Edward Bourne was the youngest of eight children with five brothers and two sisters. The 17-year-old Bourne enlisted in the army on 18 December 1872. Four years later he was promoted to Colour Sergeant, becoming the youngest NCO of this rank in the entire British Army earning him the nickname “The Kid.” On 22-23 January, Bourne was part of the garrison at Rorke’s Drift which held off a sizable portion of the Zulu army. Bourne, who was now an NCO in B Company, 24th Regiment of Foot, helped organize the defense at the mission station and field hospital until relief arrived. He received the Distinguished Conduct Medal for “outstanding coolness and courage” during the battle.
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