Photo of Leslie Kennedy's grave stone
Private Leslie Kennedy
15th Battalion, Highland Light Infantry
Died 9 July 1916
Leslie Kennedy was born on 14 September 1892 at High Street, Wigtown, the eldest son Alexander Kennedy, an agricultural labourer, and his wife, Martha Kennedy, nee White. He enlisted in the army at Glasgow and may have worked for the tramways company along with fellow Wigtown man John Harvey. He joined the 15th (Service) Battalion of the Highland Light Infantry. The battalion was raised in Glasgow in September 1914 by Glasgow Corporation employee Mr. Jimmy Dalrymple, the manager of the Tramways Department. Prior to finishing his shift one afternoon he phoned around all the Tramcar Depots and asked ‘see if any of the men would be interested in joining a battalion made up entirely of men from the ‘Caurs’. On returning to his office the next morning, some sixteen hours later, there was a list on his desk with the names of 1100 volunteers wanting to enlist. It is reckoned that the 15th were the fastest recruited Battalion in the history of the British Army. The 15th Battalion was ‘blooded’ at the Somme in 1916 and it was in that action that Leslie Kennedy was killed. His body was not found and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, the Memorial to the Missing of the Somme, which bears the names of more than 72,000 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces who died in the Somme sector before 20 March 1918 and have no known grave
The family gravestone in Wigtown’s High Cemetery also contains a memorial inscription. In July 1918 the Galloway Gazette carried the following message from Leslie Kennedy’s family: 
In loving memory of our dear son, Leslie Kennedy, who was killed in action on the 9th July 1916, aged 23 years.
We do not know what pain he bore,
We did not see him die,
We only know he passed away
And could not say good-bye.
He never shunned his country’s call,
But gladly gave his life for all;
He died the helpless to defend –
A British soldier’s noble end.