IGS 1895 (2) Punjab Frontier 1897-98, Tirah 1897-98; (4324 PTE. R. PARKER 1ST. BN GORDON HIGHRS);
QSA (3) Defence of Ladysmith, Laing’s Nek, Belfast; (4324 PTE. R. PARKER. GORDON HIGHRS:);
KSA (2) (4324 PTE. R. PARKER. GORDON HIGHRS:)
Richard Parker was born in the parish of Hyde, near Denton, Cheshire, and having worked as a collier and seen service in the Militia with the 3rd Militia Battalion, Royal Lancaster Regiment, then attested for service with the British Army at Manchester on 15th July 1892, joining as a Private (No.4324) the Gordon Highlanders. Parker was posted to the 1st Battalion, and saw service out in India from 3rd February 1894, and was present out on the Punjab Frontier and with the Tirah Field Force during 1897 to 1898. It was during operations on the North West Frontier in October 1897, during the storming of the Dargai Heights, that one of the regiment's most famous Victoria Crosses was earned. Piper George Findlater, despite being wounded in both legs, continued to play the bagpipes during the assault. Another of the heroes involved in the charge of the Gordon Highlanders at Dargai Heights was Piper John Kidd. Piper Kidd was with Piper Findlater when, half-way up the heights, both pipers were shot down. Unmindful of his injuries, Piper Kidd sat up and continued to play "The Cock o' the North" as the troops advanced up the heights.
On the outbreak of the Boer War, Parker was then posted from India to South Africa with the 1st Battalion on 24th September 1899, and was then present with the 2nd Battalion which garrisoned Ladysmith. Though he was not with the five companies of his battalion who were engaged at Elandslaagte on 21st October 1899, he saw service right through the siege of Ladysmith from 3rd November 1899 to 28th February 1900, and was subsequently present in action at Laing’s Nek and Belfast. Posted back to India from 2nd January 1902, he re-engaged with the 2nd Battalion on 16th April 1904, and having been posted to the 1st Battalion on 23rd March 1905, was posted home on 24th April 1905, and then joined the 1st Battalion there. Having been found medically unfit for further service, Parker was discharged on 31st July 1906.
IGS 1895 (2) Punjab Frontier 1897-98, Tirah 1897-98 (3807 Lc Cpl G.H. Chapman 1st Bn Gord. Hrs.);
QSA (5) Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Transvaal, South Africa 1901, South Africa 1902 (3807 Sjt: H. Chapman 1st Bn: Gordon Highrs), officially re-impressed;
International Order of Good Templars Medal, in silver, star-shaped award engraved to reverse ‘South African Campaign 1899/1902 For Steadfastness Bro. Sergt. G. Chapman’;
The Army Rifle Association’s ‘Queen’s Cup’ Medal, in silver, dated 1896, to ‘1st Battalion The Gordon Highlanders’ (No.3807 Lance Corporal G.H. Chapman); 47.5mm, 104.87g, in original box by Elkington (broken at hinge)