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John Thornton Down
Birth: Mar. 2, 1842
Greater London, England
Death: Apr. 27, 1866
Auckland, New Zealand

Second Taranaki War Victoria Cross Recipient. He was gazetted for the award on September 23, 1864 for his actions as a an ensign, along with drummer Dudley Stagpoole, in the 57th Regiment of Foot, British Army, on October 23, 1863 at Pontoko, New Zealand, while engaging the Maori natives during the Second Taranaki War. Nothing is known of his early life or when he joined the British Army. He died from a fever at the age of 24 while still serving in New Zealand. His joint Victoria Cross citation reads: "For their conduct at Pontoko, on the 2nd October, in rescuing a wounded comrade from the rebel Maori. They succeeded in bringing in the wounded man, who was lying at about fifty yards from the bush, although the enemy kept up a very heavy fire from the bush at short range, and also from behind fallen logs close at hand. The man had been wounded during an engagement with the rebel natives, and Ensign Down, and Drummer Stagpoole, responded to the call of the Officer commanding the detachment of the Regiment for volunteers to bring him in. The Medal for Distinguished Conduct in the Field has already been conferred on Drummer Stagpoole, for the energy and devotion which he displayed on the 25th September, 1863, at the affair near Kaipakopako, in having, though wounded in the head, twice volunteered and brought in wounded men." (bio by: William Bjornstad) 
Holy Trinity Memorial Park
Auckland Council
Auckland, New Zealand
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: K
Record added: Dec 15, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 8185193
John Thornton Down
Added by: S Minhinnick
John Thornton Down
Added by: S Minhinnick
John Thornton Down
Added by: Patricia Hargreaves
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Thank you for courage and valor in time of battle. May you rest in peace.
- William Bjornstad
 Added: Mar. 11, 2016
Rest in peace old chap.
- derrick unwin
 Added: Jun. 26, 2015

- Patricia Hargreaves
 Added: Mar. 9, 2015
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