Lt. Col. Latta

Lieutenant Colonel W.S. Latta
29th (Vancouver) Battalion
Latta

He led his battalion in an attack against a village, outstripping the troops on his left, as well as the guns and tanks. In this difficult, situation he handled his battalion with such skill that he reached his final objective with, comparatively small loss. He has at all times displayed fine leadership in action until severely wounded.

(2nd Bar D.S.O. Citation, Gazette, 4 Dec 1918, 4380)

Born in Ayr, Scotland on 14 April 1879, William Smith Latta was a British Columbia bookkeeper and member of the 6th Duke of Connaught Regiment. He was commissioned into the 29th Battalion at the rank of major and succeeded Lieutenant Colonel John Munro Ross in command on 23 July 1917. Multiple times decorated for bravery, he received the Distinguished Service Order and two Bars.

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Lt. Col. Tait

Lieutenant Colonel John S. Tait
29th (Tobin’s Tigers) Battalion

Tait

Major J. S. Tait, acting-lieutenant-colonel since Colonel Tobin went to a higher post, had a narrow shave two days ago, being buried by a shell. Although badly shaken up and suffering from shell shock, he has refused to leave the boys and is sticking to it.

(Vancouver World, 6 Oct 1916, 3)

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The Ruthless

Brigadier General John M. Ross
29th (Vancouver) Battalion JMRoss

At the end of September 1916, twenty German prisoners were transferred from the 28th Battalion to the 29th under the command of John Munro Ross. After only eleven prisoners arrived to the “Corps Cage,” the 6th Brigade command staff began to make inquiries. Ross clarified the situation:

“The enemy party mentioned ran into bad luck and after a misunderstanding with one of my L.G. [Lewis Gun] crews they were too dead to be used as prisoners.”

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The Lawyer

Lieutenant Colonel Henry S. Tobin, D.S.O.
29th (Tobin’s Tigers) BattalionTobin

Colonel Tobin bore testimony to his appreciation of what all those connected with the 29th had done. They had, he said, received splendid support in looking after the sick and wounded and the prisoners of war, and I know he was looking carefully—being a lawyer—after the money that has been so generously sent out to.

(Rev. C. O. Owen, 29th Bn., The Gold Stripe, 1919, 65)

Henry Seymour Tobin was a graduate of the Royal Military College and served with Lord Strathcona’s Horse in the Boer War. He was born in Ottawa on 12 January 1877. After the South Africa campaign, he became a lawyer in the Yukon, Alberta and British Columbia. A major with the 72nd Seaforth Highlanders, Tobin organized the 29th Battalion from Vancouver in early 1915.

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