Lt. Col. Gordon

Lieutenant Colonel H.D.L. Gordon
4th Canadian Mounted Rifles
Gordon

Canadian accounting principles are whatever Clarkson Gordon does.

(Col. Gordon quoted in Stephen Azzi, Walter Gordon and the Rise of Canadian Nationalism, 16)

Harry Duncan Lockhart Gordon was born in Toronto on on 29 July 1872. After attending Upper Canada College and the Royal Military College, Gordon trained as an accountant in England. By the outbreak of the Great War, he had become a prominent Toronto businessman in the accounting firm Clarkson Gordon & Co and commanding officer the 9th Mississauga Horse. He joined the 4th CMR as a major in December 1914.

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Lt. Col. S.F. Smith

Lieutenant Colonel Sandford F. Smith
4th Canadian Mounted Rifles
SmithSF

This Officer while on training duty in France was thrown by his horse and sustained a fracture of the head of the left humerus. He was evacuated to England June 10th 1917, and has been a patient at Helena Hospital until to-day, when he was discharged as completely recovered.

(Proceedings of Medical Board, 1 July 1917)

Born in Peterborough, Ontario on 4 May 1873, Sandford Fleming Smith was the grandson of famed Scottish-Canadian engineer Sir Sandford Fleming. Smith was a Toronto architect, former member of the Queen’s Own Rifles and commanding officer of the Governor-General’s Body Guard.

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Lt. Col. Patterson

Lieutenant Colonel W.R. Patterson
4th Canadian Mounted Rifles
Patterson

MISTAKEN IDENTITY

J.M. Patterson, ex-Mayor of Paris this morning expressed doubt that it is his son, Lt.-Col. W.R. Patterson who was yesterday reported to have been raised to the rank of Brigadier. Lt.-Col. Patterson is in command of the 4th CMR, while another officer, Lt.-Col. R.W Paterson, attached to the Fort Garry Horse, is the on who has received promotion. Similar confusion has arisen before as both officers have won the D.S.O.

(Brantford Courier, 5 June 1918)

William Reginald Patterson was born on 1 December 1884 in Paris, Ontario where he father was later three time mayor. The younger Patterson worked in his father’s grocery and glassware store before enlisting in the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles, which by the end of the war he would command. Their very similar names meant he was frequently confused with Brigadier Robert Walter Paterson of the Canadian Cavalry Brigade.

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Lt. Col. Stevenson

Lieutenant Colonel H.I. Stevenson
1st Canadian Mounted Rifles and Fort Garry Horse
Stevenson

When our line was temporarily pierced, he led a charge with great skill and dash, by which the enemy were driven back and a new line established. He succeeded in establishing communication with the troops on his right flank, and though heavily outnumbered maintained this line until relieved by fresh infantry units. His prompt action and cool leadership were the means of allowing two battalions of infantry, who were in danger of being cut off, to withdraw safely to our line.

 (D.S.O. Citation, Gazette, 22 June 1918)

Herbert Irving Stevenson was in Richibucto, New Brunswick on 17 July 1878. After serving in the Boer War he moved west to Manitoba in 1903. He began working for the Dominion Forestry Service in 1912. He organized the 1st Canadian Mounted Rifles in December 1914 but was replaced a year later when the mounted rifles became infantry.

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Lt. Col. Johnston

Lieutenant Colonel G.C. Johnston
2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles
GCJohnston

During the morning of February 3rd [1916], I had the honour of a visit from General Currie, one I did not at all appreciate, as he at once proceeded to reduce me to a nervous wreck by putting me through a whole catechism of questions as to where I was to go, and what I would do with my company in the event of the Huns breaking through the front line. At this point, when I was thoroughly uncomfortable, the Bosche commenced to shell the hill and some shrapnel, coming through the roof, wounded one of our batmen, Hawkins, broke a window and ended the interview, much to my relief. Ten minutes after the general left the shelling became more intense, and before it finished we had fourteen casualties.

 (G. Chalmers Johnston, 2nd CMR in France and Flanders, 18)

George Chalmers Johnston was born in London, England on 21 April 1874. A general agent in British Columbia with the 30th B.C. Horse, Johnston enlisted in Lieut. Col. J.C.L. Bott’s 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles as a captain in December 1914. Continue reading

Lt. Col. Kirkpatrick

Lieutenant Colonel G.H. Kirkpatrick
11th Canadian Mounted Rifles & 72nd Battalion
GHKirkpatrick

The outstanding fearlessness of the new C.O., Lieut-Col. G. H. Kirkpatrick, D.S.O., also calls for special notice. This was the first occasion on which he had complete command of the Battalion in an action, and his courage and coolness were an inspiration to all ranks.

(History of the 72nd Battalion, Seaforth Highlanders of Canada, 1920, 150)

Guy Hamilton Kirkpatrick succeeded Lieutenant Colonel J. A. Clark in command of the 72nd Battalion on 5 September 1918. Born on 5 November 1875 in Kingston, Ontario, he graduated from the Royal Military College in 1896 and fought in South Africa with Lord Strathcona’s Horse. His father, Sir George Airey Kirkpatrick (1841—1899), had been a Conservative MP and Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.

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Lt. Col. Laws

Lieutenant Colonel Burnett Laws
1st Canadian Mounted Rifles
Laws

During the last war I served 41 months in France as Adjutant, 2nd in Command and Officer Commanding of a fighting Battalion — so surely my experience in the handling of me could be put to some use. I have kept pretty well posed in the changes made during the time elapsed since going on the reserve of officers and with a Refresher course could take hold of a Battalion or even a Brigade and whip it into shape. As you know I qualified for the command of a fighting Battalion which at the end of the last war had a reputation second to none in the Canadian Corps.

(Col. Laws to Military District No. 12, 22 May 1940)

Burnett Laws was a former North West Mounted Police constable, Boer War veteran and member of the 22nd Saskatchewan Light Horse. Born in Northumberland, England on 3 March 1877, he immigrated to Canada in 1897. After retiring from the NWMP in 1904, he became a farmer in Lloydminster, Saskatchewan.

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Lt. Col. Bywater

Lieutenant Colonel A.E. Bywater
33rd Battalion
Bywater

Considerable pressure is being brought to bear on adopting a new flag for Canada, in many cases by certain factions who were not over-zealous fighting Wars I and II and whose loyalty is often doubted.

 Were a new flag to be adopted would it not be the most deadly insult and ingratitude toward the thousands buried in foreign lands, draped with the Union Jack and the thousands maimed and broken and hundreds of thousands who fought to keep that flag flying, a flag that has been baptized in the blood and sacrifices of our boys and now, next to the cross is a sacred emblem?

(Bywater, Globe and Mail, 17 Oct 1945, 6)

Arthur Edwin Bywater was a gentleman farmer and militia officer born in Colbone, Ontario on 7 April 1869. He first enlisted in the 21st Battalion before being appointed senior major with Lieutenant Colonel J. A. V. Preston’s 39th Battalion in March 1915. After the 39th was broken up, Bywater assumed command of the 33rd Reserve Battalion in England.

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Lt. Col. E.J. Ryan

Lieutenant Colonel E.J.W. Ryan
102nd (British Columbia) Battalion
EJWRyan

When wounds compelled my temporary retirement you exhibited the same fine qualities of patience, obedience and endurance under the command in turn of my second, Major (now Lieut.-Colonel) E.J. Ryan, D.S.O. So many changes in command might well have taxed the discipline of older troops than you, but to the everlasting credit of the 102nd Battalion you gave each and all a full measure of confidence and devotion.

 (Lt. Col. F Lister, address to 102nd, 25 May 1919)

A building contractor in Vancouver, Edward John Wilson Ryan was born in Mille Isle, Quebec on 7 September 1884. He enlisted with the 121st Battalion as a captain in December 1915. After a promotion to major, he went on an instruction tour of the front with the 102nd Battalion in October 1916. He was retained for service in France and later became the unit’s second in command.

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Lt. Col. Mersereau

Lieutenant Colonel Jack Mersereau, D.S.O.
25th (Nova Scotia Rifles) Battalion

Col. C. J. Mersereau, a French Canadian who went with the first contingent sent by Canada to the front, spoke French and a little English. He has returned knowing no French, but still retaining the power to speak English. At the second battle of Ypres he was struck by a fragment of a shell on the head. He was operated on and lay in the hospital three months, with but little hope of recovery. He finally pulled through, but without the power of understanding any language but English.

(San Bernardino County Sun, 12 Sept 1916, 10)

Born on 13 July 1880 in Bathurst, New Brunswick Chalmers Jack Mersereau was the second son of Lieutenant Colonel George W. Mersereau of 132nd Battalion. A graduate of Harvard with an MA and PhD, he formed a brokerage firm in Doaktown. He belonged to the 73rd Regiment for ten years, served with the Royal Canadian Regiment for eight and was commander of the New Brunswick Corps of Guides at the outbreak of the Great War.

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