Lt. Col. Ussher

Lieutenant Colonel J.F.H. Ussher
4th Canadian Mounted Rifles

In view of the foregoing the people who are providing the taxes for this well-deserved bonus to the soldiers should insist that all strings to the payment should be removed. Don’t let some Government appointee be the sole judge– the soldier’s record of service must decide!

(Ussher to Globe and Mail, 18 Aug 1944, 16)

During the battle of Mont Sorrel on 2 June 1916, John Frederick Holmes Ussher became trapped in a collapsed tunnel during heavy German shelling. He was wounded and captured. He spent the next two and a half years a prisoner of war.

Born in Toronto on 27 October 1872, Ussher was a stock broker and Boer War veteran. A nine year member of the Queen’s Own Rifles and ten year member of the 9th Mississauga Horse, he enlisted as major of ‘C’ Squadron in the 4th CMR.

After Lieutenant Colonel S. F. Smith transferred to the Canadian Cavalry Brigade, Ussher assumed command of the 4th CMR in March 1916. During the unit’s first action at Mont Sorrel three months later, the regiment was decimated. Only three of twenty-two officers returned to the Canada lines. Ussher was held in a German POW camp until March 1918 when he was interned to Switzerland. He was released in December 1918.

Ussher resumed his militia career after the war. He died in Toronto on 4 July 1956.


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