May 23, 2020. In uncovering the stories of the names on the Cenotaph outside the Borden-Carleton Legion, it’s been an eye-opener on how being based in Canada during wartime was no guarantee of safety! Accidents and illnesses took their share of lives, a fate that befell WW2 soldier Harold “Lloyd” LEFURGEY, who was born on June 9, 1926 in North Bedeque.
The son of Harold Lefurgey and Mary Todd, Lloyd lived in North Bedeque with his family until 1942, when the family moved to Saint John, New Brunswick.
Employed as a marine coppersmith’s helper at the St. John Drydocks in Saint John, he enlisted in the Canadian Army on February 16, 1945 in Fredericton. A note on his enlistment record noted that he was “underage for overseas until June 9, 1945.”
A few weeks later, while undergoing basic infantry training at No 70 Canadian Infantry (Basic) Training Centre in Fredericton, he fell ill. He was taken to Fredericton Military Hospital, New Brunswick and was about to be operated on for acute appendicitis.
The Casualty Report records that “On the night of the 16th March 1945 Pte Lefurgey was quite sick in bed, but seemed to recover the next morning. When asked to go on sick parade, he replied that he preferred to go on Physical Training Parade. He took sick again at about 0900 hours 17th March 1945 and was immediately taken to the Medical Inspection Room, from where he was at once taken by ambulance to Fredericton Military Hospital. He was about to be operated on for acute appendicitis, and he died before the operation could actually be started, while under anesthetic. Cause of death: cardiac syncope.” He was only 18 years old. (Note: Syncope is the medical term for ‘fainting’. “Cardiac syncope occurs when the source of one’s loss of consciousness stems from a problem in the heart that prevents it from supplying enough nutrients and oxygen to the brain.”…. Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK526027/)
Anna Lefurgey Cornish wrote that “His parents were living in St. John. A member of the armed forces came to the house to inform them of their son’s passing. His remains were taken home to Cape Traverse and a funeral held in The Free Church of Scotland and then interred in the cemetery there.”
Thank you to Johnson Duplessis and Anna Lefurgey Cornish for providing photos and information on Harold “Lloyd” Lefurgey. If you have an anecdote or photo to share, please contact Pieter at email@example.com or comment on the blog.
© Daria Valkenburg