John Heard was an Able Seaman who served aboard HMS Captain and was one of the survivors when the ship capsized in a storm. He served aboard HMS Amethyst in the Ashanti War 1873- 1874. He did not serve on any Royal Navy ship that was involved in the Zulu War. Heard's name does not appear on the Royal Navy's South Africa Medal rolls. He served in the Royal Navy from 1860 to 1884 when he was pensioned ashore.