Lieutenant Colonel Stan Gardner, M.C.†
7th (1st British Columbia) Battalion
Lieut.-Col. Gardner is known and respected not only as a fighting man and successful officer, but also a true friend to the soldier who does his duty as it should be done.
(Daily Colonist, 15 Sept 1916, 5)
Born in London, England on 22 August 1880, Stanley Douglas Gardner was a member of the 22nd London Regiment before immigrating to British Columbia. A veteran of the Canadian Mounted Rifles in the Boer War, he enlisted as a captain with the 7th Battalion in September 1914. Stanley was soon appointed battalion adjutant but he was seriously wounded at Festubert on 25 May 1915 and invalided to England.
In recognition of his gallantry, he was awarded the Legion of Honor and the Military Cross. He did not rejoin the 7th Battalion until he succeeded Victor Odlum one year later in June 1916.
He was evacuated to England again in October 1916 following physical breakdown during the battle of the Somme. Command of the 7th Battalion passed to Major W. F. Gibson, who had succeeded Gardner as adjutant in May 1915.
An October 1916 medical board recorded:
In June 1915, he received a shrapnel wound of right chest. This wound is giving some trouble now with cough and dry pleurisy. He has recurrent colds. This Officer has had long strain of service lately which does not improve his condition.
(Proceedings of Medical Board, 13 Oct 1916)
Gardner was promoted to full colonel in charge of reserve and training brigades until he reverted to take command of the 38th Battalion on 29 August 1918.
He had led the 38th Highlanders for just one month when he was mortally wounded by shell and gunfire on 28 September. He died two days later at No. 4 Clearing Station. Command passed to Lieut. Col. A. D. Cameron.