Fraser Singer Beaton
52nd Battalion. Gordon Highlanders
Died 12th March 1918 aged 18.
Private F.G. Beaton – Gordon Hrs.
Fraser Singer (not G) Beaton of the 52nd Btn. Gordon Highlanders was born in Aberlour on 5 June 1899. His parents were Farquhar Beaton, a baker, and Isabella Forbes Singer who married at Inverurie in 1894. In 1901 the family were living with Isabella’s parents at Urybank, Keithhall, Inverurie. Fraser had an older brother Farquhar. His grandparents, Francis and Isabella Singer, also had 7 children living with them at that time, the eldest being 35 and the youngest 6. In the census of 1911 the Beatons, including Fraser aged 11, were registered at Myra Cottage, Torphins, by which time he had twin younger sisters aged 9. He gave his place of residence on enlistment in the Gordons (No. TR1/10586) as Aberdeen. Records show that he had registered as a member of the National Union of Railway Workers in April 2017, so his fateful war service may have been quite short, as he died aged 18 at Colchester on Tuesday 12 March 1918 and was buried at Inverurie.
The Aberdeen Weekly Journal on 22 March 1918 reported on what happened to him: “Private Fraser S. Beaton, Gordons, who died of pneumonia in a military camp in England, was buried with military honours in Inverurie Churchyard on Tuesday afternoon. The Rev Wm Cruickshank, U. F. Church, conducted the service. The local Volunteer Company and also the soldiers employed at the Locomotive Works, under the command of Captain P. W. M. Laing were present. The firing party was in the charge of Sergt. Wm Park.
Private Beaton was a son of Mr Farquhar Beaton, baker, late of Torphins. He was for some time in service at Drumnagesk, and latterly in the employment of the Great North of Scotland Railway Company”.