Joseph Burns was the son of William and Annie Burns. Joseph was born in Cookstown about 1890. It seems that he enlisted as John Burns, but in civilian life he was known as Joseph. He enlisted in June 1908. He married Sarah Burns (nee Burns) on 3rd June 1911 in Cookstown. They had two sons. John was promoted regularly and was made Sergeant in June 1914. His wife Sarah died on 25th March 1915. On 2nd July 1915, John was badly injured in both legs by a bomb at Gallipoli. He was discharged, being no longer physically fit for active service, a year later on 21st July 1916. He was moved to Chelsea for a time and then back to Cookstown. Sergeant John Joseph Burns died as a result of his wounds on 7th August 1920. Sergeant Burns is interred in Cookstown New Cemetery.