b. 1829 Donaghcloney, County Armagh, Northern Ireland. d. 05/10/1888 Belfast.
Bernard McQuirt (1829-1888) was born in 1829 in Donaghcloney, near Lurgan, County Armagh, Ireland. As a young man, he enlisted with the 95th Regiment of Foot (later Sherwood Foresters, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment), and by 1857 and the outbreak of the Indian Mutiny, he and his regiment was on route for South Africa.
They were quickly re-directed to India and landed at Bombay and formed part of the Rajputana Field Force. On the 6th January 1858, the 95th became involved in the assault on the entrenched town of Rowa. During the assault, McQuirt became involved in hand to hand combat with three men. He fought valiantly, killing one and wounding another. In the midst of this combat, he was wounded six times, five by sabre cuts and the other by a musket shot.
Due to the severity of his wounds, he was returned to the UK and medically discharged. His Victoria Cross was gazetted on 11th November 1859, and he would receive his medal in person from Queen Victoria at Windsor Castle on 4th January 1860, almost 2 years after his action. Following his investiture, he returned to Ireland, where he lived in obscurity, until his death on 5th October 1888, at his home, 72 Urney Street in Belfast. He was buried in an unmarked grave in Belfast City Cemetery. He was buried under the name of McCourt. A headstone was later placed in his memory in the Donaghcloney Churchyard. His medals are not publicly held.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: NOT PUBLICLY HELD.
BURIAL PLACE: BELFAST CITY CEMETERY, BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND. (UNMARKED)
McQuirt VC is buried in Section J, Grave 233
Donaghcloney War Memorial