Constable William Tait Brown, a native of Tweedsmuir, Peebleshire, joined the City of Glasgow Police in 1907. He was posted to ‘D’ (Southern) Division and later appointed Detective Constable in that Division. His Register No. was A-219.
On 21 January 1916, Constable Brown was informed that a woman had jumped into the River Clyde from the Suspension Bridge near South Portland Street, with the intention of committing suicide. Constable Brown ran to the river, took off his greatcoat and entered the river. He successfully rescued the woman, pulling her to safety.
On 25 September, 1917, a seaman fell into the River Clyde from the Suspension Bridge. Det. Constable Brown, on being told of the incident, ran to the location, removed his jacket and jumped into the river. He successfully seized hold of the seaman and pulled him to the river bank.
In respect of these two rescues, Det. Constable Brown was awarded the King’s Police Medal for Gallantry (London Gazette 1.1.18) and a certificate from the Carnegie Heroes’ Trust Fund in January 1918.
On 20 October, 1920 on a cold and foggy night, Det. Constable Brown was on duty in the Southern Police Office when he was informed that a woman had thrown herself into the River Clyde at the Suspension Bridge with the intention of committing suicide. He ran to the bridge and plunged, fully clothed, into the river. To effect the rescue, he had to swim 40 yards from the river bank and locate the woman. He successfully rescued the woman and brought her to safety.
For this rescue, Det. Constable Brown was awarded a BAR to his King’s Police Medal for Gallantry in January 1921. He is the only Glasgow Police officer to have been awarded the medal twice. (London Gazette 30.12.1921)
Det. Constable Brown was later promoted through the ranks of the Glasgow Police to the rank of Superintendent in charge of the Southern Division and retired from there on 31 May 1938.