David Burns Gillies was born on the 25th January 1885 at Walton to David Gillies and Catherine (nee Boyd).
 
His parents were both Scottish; his father, who was a fellmonger (a dealer in hides) was born at Roberton, Selkirk and his mother at Stewarton, Ayrshire. They were married in Ayrshire in 1883 but all of their children were born in Bootle.
 
1891 Census - 14 Cedar Street, Bootle cum Linacre - Parents David and Katherine and children David B, Euphemia V and Helen E
 
1901 Census - 43 Malta Road, Bootle cum Linacre - Parents David and Catherine and children David, Euphemia, Helen, Janet, Katie, Therese and Isabel and one servant.
 
The family were still living at 43 Malta Road when David Gillies senior died at Formby on the 8th October 1906. He was described as a gentleman when his wife obtained probate of his estate. His effects were valued at £2,960 18s 10d (£300,000 at current values.)
 
1911 Census - 295 Knowsley Road, Bootle - Mother Catherine (Widow) with children David, Euphemia, Helen, Janet, Catherine, Theresa, Isabella, Agnes and William.
 
David Burns Gillies was a book keeper in 1911.
 
He was married on the 12th September 1914 to Jane Baron at St.Matthew’s C.of E. Church, Bootle. 
 
He enlisted in the army at Bootle and served first with the 10th (Scottish) battalion King's Liverpool Regiment (no 9524).but had transferred to the Machine Gun Corps by the time he was posted to the front. His medal card suggests that this was after January 1916. His service records have not survived.
 
He was killed in action on the 5th August 1917.
A report on his death appeared in the Bootle Times on the 31st August 1917. His photo appeared in the report and is reproduced here with the kind permission of the Liverpool Daily Post & Echo.
 
COMRADES' COMPACT.
TO WRITE HOME FOR EACH OTHER.
   Pte. David Burns Gillies, K.L.R., eldest son of the late Mr. David Gillies and of Mrs. Catherine Gillies, of 295, Knowsley-road, Bootle, was killed in action on August 6th, when serving with the M.G.C., to which he was attached after joining the Army. A native of Bootle, he was educated at Christ Church school and the Liverpool Institute, and subsequently became book-keeper for the firm of Messrs. Michael Manion, Water-street, Liverpool. He was born on January 25th thirty-two years ago, and joined the Army this year on the anniversary of his birth. Deep sympathy will be felt with his young widow, who resides at Mossfield-road, Orrell Park, and with the mother and family. 
   A comrade writing to the relative, says. "He was killed by a shell exploding early on the morning of August 6th while at the post of duty. I happened to be quite near him at the time, and went to him at once, only to find that death had been instantaneous. He was to me not only a companion, but a true and close friend. My heart aches for his wife, of whom your son had spoken to me do often . . . . . Some while ago we agreed to write home for each other should the necessity arise.

Bootle Times 31st August 1917

 
Probate of his estate was obtained at Liverpool by his widow, of 9 Mossfield Road, on the 25th February 1918. David was described as a machine gunner attached to the 10th battalion K.L.R. His effects were valued at £33 (£1,900 at current values.)