On The War Memorial Trail….. Update On Portrait Of WW1 Soldier From Barton

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Photo of WW1 soldier Lloyd Shortliff.  (Photo restoration: Pieter Valkenburg)

January 7, 2023.   In a previous posting, we told the story of how a photo of WW1 soldier Lloyd Clifford SHORTLIFF of Barton, Nova Scotia was rescued when veteran Mario Henry purchased the picture at an auction.

Lloyd’s body was never recovered from the French battlefields following his death on September 17, 1916, and his name is listed on the Canadian National Vimy Memorial.  (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2022/07/31/the-ww1-soldier-from-barton-whose-body-was-never-recovered/)

google maps digby NS to Barton NS

Barton is 14.9 km away from Digby.  (Map source: Google)

The Royal Canadian Legion in Weymouth, Nova Scotia expressed an interest in the picture after learning it existed from Nova Scotia Command of the Royal Canadian Legion.  On a September 2022 trip to Nova Scotia, we brought over the portrait and handed it over to Sandra Lent of the Weymouth Legion in Barton, located between Digby and Weymouth.  (See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barton,_Nova_Scotia)

Barton is very small and the war memorial is located on one side of the highway, in front of a cemetery, and set back from the road. Not being close to the road helps protect it from car exhaust and snow clearing on the very busy Hwy 101.

….The picture of Lloyd Shortliff briefly sat at the Barton War Memorial….

It seemed only fitting that before Sandra Lent took the picture of Lloyd Shortliff to the Weymouth Legion that a photo be taken of the picture on the side of the Barton War Memorial with his name.

CIMG5802 Sep 12 2022 Barton Memorial Pieter and Sandra Lent

Pieter and Sandra Lent with the picture of Lloyd Shortliff at the Barton War Memorial.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

….An unexpected turn of events…..

A few days after we met with Sandra Lent we asked if the portrait had been hung up in the Weymouth Legion.  The reply was that it might be hung up within the day, but then came an unexpected twist.  “Apparently the Shortliff name was common in Barton, and I thought the Digby Legion might be interested in having it….” Sandra wrote. 

That was a surprise to us as when Nova Scotia Command had initially asked Legion branches in the area who might be interested in the picture, the only response came from Sandra on behalf of the Weymouth Legion.

The Zone Commander for Weymouth Legion subsequently reported to Sandra that he had taken the portrait to Digby Legion and that “….the president took the picture and informed me she would hang it on a wall …

That was in September 2022.  Up to now, Digby Legion has not responded to any inquiries about the portrait, although Pieter has left phone messages, sent emails, and even tried to contact them via their Facebook page.  We do not know what happened to the portrait, but the lack of response suggests it was never hung up.

Had we known that neither Legion branch was going to hang the portrait of Lloyd Shortliff, we would never have brought it over.  It is a disappointing ending to a story that began so positively, with the rescue of a portrait of a WWI soldier, who gave his life in France and has no known grave.  Mario Henry and Pieter only wanted to ensure that Lloyd Shortliff’s portrait had a place of honour in his home province. 

….Other names listed on the Barton Memorial…..

  • WW1 soldier Harold Pryor ALMON, born March 27, 1894, died July 31, 1917, buried in Belgian Battery Corner Cemetery in Ypres, Belgium
  • WW1 soldier Kenneth Ensley COSMAN, born February 13, 1894, died June 9, 1917, buried Glasgow Western Necropolis in Glasgow, Scotland
  • WW1 soldier Edward Wyatt HAIGHT, born September 2, 1891, died September 16, 1916, listed on the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in Vimy, France
  • WW1 soldier Harley MELANSON, born April 8, 1893, died August 11, 1917, buried in Maroc British Cemetery in Nord, France
  • WW2 Pilot officer William Dakin MULLEN (MULLIN), born June 23, 1922, died June 8, 1944, buried in Blévy Communal Cemetery in Blévy, France
  • WW1 soldier Benjamin Murray SABEAN, born May 11, 1897, died September 29, 1917, buried in Birmingham (Lodge Hill) Cemetery in Warwickshire, United Kingdom
  • WW1 soldier Roger Lent SPECHT, born August 1, 1897, died February 3, 1919, buried in Bramshott (St. Mary) Churchyard in Hampshire, United Kingdom
  • WW1 soldier Walter James URQUHART, born August 10, 1879, died October 13, 1916, buried in Regina Trench Cemetery in Somme, France

Thank you again to Mario Henry for saving the photo which gave us a chance to tell Lloyd Shortliff’s story. Perhaps one day we will have a more positive update.

Do you have a story to tell? Email Pieter at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or tweet to @researchmemori1

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/ or email me at dariadv@yahoo.ca and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Front cover OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEuropeDaria’s book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten‘ is available in print and e-book formats.  For more information see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/

You are also invited to subscribe to our YouTube Channel: On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw

© Daria Valkenburg

2022 Christmas Eve Candle Lighting In The Netherlands

Dec 24 2022 Makkum overview candles Robin de Jong

Candles were placed at the graves of airmen buried in the Donia Protestant Church Cemetery in Makkum.  (Photo credit: Robin de Jong)

December 26, 2022.  A Christmas Eve tradition to light candles by the graves of Allied soldiers and Dutch resistance fighters who are buried in one of the War Cemeteries or in a municipal cemetery continued this year.

This year, we include photos from three municipal cemeteries and one memorial:  Donia Protestant Church Cemetery in Makkum, the Halifax L9451 memorial panel in Wons, Harlingen General Cemetery in Harlingen, and Sleen General Cemetery in Sleen.

….Donia Protestant Church Cemetery in Makkum….

Remko de Jong, a resident of Makkum, coordinates the candle lighting ceremony in his village. Candles were placed at the graves at 38 airmen who are buried in the Donia Protestant Church Cemetery in Makkum, located by Lake Ijsselmeer in the province of Friesland.

Dec 24 2022 Makkum foto`s gemaakt door Lin Struiving

Candles were placed at the graves of airmen buried in the Donia Protestant Church Cemetery in Makkum.  (Photo credit: Lin Struiving)

Dec 24 2022 Makkum Tabor Robin de Jong

Candle placed at the grave of John Francis Edward Tabor. (Photo credit: Robin de Jong)

One of the airmen buried in Makkum is RCAF Flying Officer John Francis Edward TABOR of Ottawa, Ontario, who lost his life when the plane he was in, Halifax LK 879 crashed at sea on the night of December 16, 1944 into December 17, 1944.

20211224_170919 Dec 24 2022 Makkum Nisbet Robin de Jong

Candle placed at the grave of George David Nisbet. (Photo credit: Robin de Jong)

Another of the airmen buried in Makkum is RCAF Air Gunner Sgt George David NISBET of Conquest, Saskatchewan, whose body was recovered from the sea on June 7, 1944, after being reported missing on May 24, 1944.

…The Halifax L9561 memorial panel in Wons…

The De Jong family travelled to Wons, also in the province of Friesland, to place a candle at the Halifax L9561 memorial panel.  This memorial, unveiled in October 2019, honours the crew of Halifax L9561.  WW2 pilot Elmer Bagnall MUTTART of Cape Traverse, Prince Edward Island lost his life on October 12, 1941, but the rest of the crew were able to safely bail out of the burning plane.  (For a short documentary on the unveiling of the memorial panel and the crew of Halifax L9561, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=71Rzg07kPw0&list=PLaJcEVojJra-ZwR6rvb-THj8Zr2QbUXLT&index=2

20221224_130222 Dec 24 2022 Candle by memorial panel in Wons Robin de Jong

Candle placed at the memorial panel in Wons, honouring the crew of Halifax L9561. (Photo credit: Robin de Jong)

…Harlingen General Cemetery in Harlingen…

20221225_163618 Dec 24 2022 Harlingen

Candles placed at graves of Allied airmen in Harlingen General Cemetery.  (Photo credit: Willem Visser)

Willem Visser sent photos taken during the candle lighting in Harlingen General Cemetery in Harlingen, in the province of Friesland.

In the photo above, RCAF Flight Sgt Elmer Bagnall MUTTART of Cape Traverse, Prince Edward Island, who is commemorated on the memorial panel in Wons, is buried at the very far right in the front row.

The second row, on the left, contains the graves of Murray Ralph KLEISDORFF of Australia and three unknown airmen, all from Halifax W1175 LQ-Q of the 405th Vancouver Squadron RCAF, which came down into the Wadden Sea on June 28, 1942.  Perhaps one of these unknown graves contains the remains of RCAF Warrant Officer Class II Rowan Charles FITZGERALD of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, who was the navigator aboard the flight. (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2022/10/12/on-the-war-memorial-trail-well-never-forget-uncle-bunky/)

DSC_0049Dec 24 2022 Harlingen Muttart

Candle placed at the grave of Elmer Bagnall Muttart. (Photo credit: Willem Visser)

DSC_0055 Dec 24 2022 Harlingen Kleisdorff and maybe FitzGerald

Candles placed at the graves of Murray Ralph Kleisdorff and unknown graves from the same flight. (Photo credit: Willem Visser)

…Sleen General Cemetery in Sleen…

Harlingen, Makkum, and Wons are all in the province of Friesland.  Sleen is a village in the province of Drenthe.  An upcoming story in 2023 will be about RCAF Flight Sgt John Douglas ‘Jack’ MACKENZIE of Winnipeg, Manitoba, who lost his life on February 4, 1943 when the plane he was piloting, Halifax DU 630-T, was hit by artillery fire.

When asked by Remco de Jong, Hans Buls sent photos of the candles lit for Jack MacKenzie and three of his crewmates: William Peter DUTHIE of Winnipeg, Manitoba; Lennox Alwin GONNETT of Westmount, Quebec; Raymond Hepton HILL of Montreal, Quebec.

Dec 24 2022 fotos lichtjes oorlogsgraven 2022 Begraafplaats Sleen (Drenthe) Hans Buis

List of Allied airmen buried in Sleen General Cemetery.  (Photo credit: Hans Buls)

Dec 24 2022 J.D Mackenzie Begraafplaats Sleen (Drenthe) Hans Buis

Candle placed at the grave of John Douglas ‘Jack’ MacKenzie. (Photo credit: Hans Buls)

Dec 24 2022 W.P Duthie Begraafplaats Sleen (Drenthe) Hans Buis

Candle placed at the grave of William Peter Duthie. (Photo credit: Hans Buls)

Dec 24 2022 L.A.J Gonnett Begraafplaats Sleen (Drenthe) Hans Bais

Candle placed at the grave of Lennox Alwin Gonnett. (Photo credit: Hans Buls)

Dec 24 2022 R.H Hill Begraafplaats Sleen (Drenthe) Hans Buis

Candle placed at the grave of Raymond Hepton Hill. (Photo credit: Hans Buls)

….Over 7,600 Canadian soldiers are buried in The Netherlands!…

Kudos to the Dutch, who never forget the sacrifices made by Allied soldiers! Over 7,600 Canadian soldiers are buried in The Netherlands and they are not forgotten.  Thank you to Remco de Jong for sharing photos from Makkum and Wons taken by Lin Struiving and his son Robin, to Hans Buls for sharing photos from Sleen (check out the Hans Buls Photography Facebook page), and to Willem Visser for sharing photos from Harlingen.

If you have a story or photo to share about Canadian military personnel buried in The Netherlands, please contact Pieter at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or tweet to @researchmemori1.

…Previous postings about Christmas Eve Candle Lighting…

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/ or email me at dariadv@yahoo.ca and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Front cover OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEuropeDaria’s book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten‘ is available in print and e-book formats.  Net proceeds of book sales help support research costs and the cost of maintaining this blog. For more information on the book, please see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/

You are also invited to subscribe to our YouTube Channel: On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw.

© Daria Valkenburg

Happy Holidays From The Valkenburgs!

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December 24, 2022.  It’s hard to believe how quickly 2022 has raced by.  It seems like only yesterday that Pieter was preparing his research plan for the year, and I was working on the final chapters of a book. 

It’s been a busy year.  Several long-standing searches for photos were successful, meaning Pieter could complete his files for those soldiers.  New research files were added, such as the request to find photos and family for 4 soldiers of Ukrainian descent, and Pieter was able to finish his research for many of the unfinished files from 2021.  There is a lag between him completing his work and me getting a chance to document his research, but that is on my ‘to do’ list for this winter.

While we didn’t get to travel as much as we had hoped, we were able to meet several families, which we very much appreciated.  We were able to able much with the help of media, and the many families that came forward to share photos and information.  What follows in the rest of this posting is a summary of what happened in 2022 with this research project.

…Book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten’….

In February 2022 a book Daria wrote about our 2017 war memorial tour in Europe through 4 countries was published, and is available in print and e-book formats.  See www.nosoldierforgotten.com for more information.

OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEurope_Barcode

…Pieter Honoured With PEI Senior Islander of the Year Award….

On October 21, 2022, Pieter Valkenburg received the PEI Senior Islander of the Year Award, for his ongoing research to uncover the stories and photos of those who served in WW1 and WW2, and sharing his research findings with the public.  

The certificate was presented by the Hon. Matthew Mackay, Minister for the Department of Social Development and Housing, and Audrey Morris, Chairperson, PEI Seniors Secretariat, in a ceremony at the Loyalist Inn in Summerside.   (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2022/10/23/pieter-receives-pei-senior-islander-of-the-year-award/)

…. Soldiers Listed On The Cenotaph Outside Borden-Carleton Legion …….

This year we added more information on soldiers whose stories had previously been told:

  • After a 7 year search we received a photo for WWI soldier James CAIRNS of Kinkora, Prince Edward Island, who died during the Battle of Amiens and is buried in France.
  • After another 7 year search we received a photo for WWII soldier Leonard Stephen AVERY of Bedeque, Prince Edward Island, who died after he was accidentally shot through the head while examining a rifle. He’s buried on Prince Edward Island.

 … WW1 Related Stories….

  • We explained what a Field Post Card was and shared more observations from WW1 soldier Harold Keith HOWATT, giving a comparison of what went into the Field Post Card and what he actually experienced that didn’t go into the card.
  • We shared the story of how a photo of WW1 soldier Lloyd Clifford SHORTLIFF of Barton, Nova Scotia, whose named is inscribed on the Vimy Memorial in France, was saved when a Legion member bought it at an auction. A Legion in Nova Scotia will be taking possession of this picture.

 … WW2 Related Stories….

  • We shared a story about the 2021 candle lighting at graves of Canadian soldiers in The Netherlands.
  • We shared on update on a 2020 posting about Ralph Gordon MCCUTCHEON, a WW2 flight student at the No. 9 Service Flying Training School RCAF in Summerside, Prince Edward Island, who died in a plane crash in North Tryon, Prince Edward Island.
  • We shared a visit that Pieter made to Coffeen Nature Preserve in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, site of a WW2 era JB-2 missile launching test site. The JB-2 flying robot bombs were the American version of the German V1 flying bombs.
  • We shared a story about the 2022 commemoration of 8 Carleton and York Regiment soldiers who lost their lives during the liberation of the village of Posterenk in The Netherlands on April 13, 1945.
  • We shared a story about the May 6, 2022 unveiling of the Monument in Gendringen, The Netherlands to commemorate those who lost their lives, including 41 Canadian soldiers and airmen.
  • We shared the story of the successful outcome of a photo search for WW2 soldier Allan ‘Gordon’ COUTTS of the North Nova Scotia Highlanders, who is buried in the Canadian War Cemetery in Holten, The Netherlands.
  • We shared a story of the tribute to 27 Ukrainian-Canadian soldiers at the Canadian War Cemetery in Holten, The Netherlands.
  • We shared a story about the search for WW2 soldier Wilfred GIROUX who was in Gilze Rijen, The Netherlands in December 1944 and befriended a Dutch couple, and whose daughter wished to repatriate a photo and two Christmas cards to the Giroux family.
  • We shared the heart-warming story about how WWI soldier Frank PEARCE and his friends made Christmas 1944 in England memorable for the Pearce family.

…Indigenous Soldiers….

We were able to tell the stories of the service by these WW2 Indigenous soldiers:

  • WW2 Indigenous soldier Philip LAFORTE from Manitoba, who was killed in The Netherlands.
  • WW2 Indigenous soldier John ‘Jack’ Richard MARACLE from Ontario, who was killed in Germany.
  • WW2 Indigenous soldier Stanley Owen JONES from British Columbia, who drowned on September 8, 1945 in Germany when the carrier he was in overturned in a ditch.

…. Stories About Servicemen From The Maritimes…

We also featured stories about servicemen from The Maritimes:

  • WW1 soldier Theodore (Ted) Francis ARSENAULT from Prince Edward Island, who lost his life during the Battle of Amiens in France.
  • WW2 soldier Bruce Wilbur CHURCHILL from Nova Scotia, who was accidentally killed in The Netherlands when a bullet from a Bren Gun ricocheted and hit him.
  • WW2 airman Rowan Charles ‘Bunky’ FITZGERALD from Prince Edward Island, who was on the last flight of Halifax W1175 of the 405th Squadron when it was hit by shellfire and crashed onto a sandbank in the Wadden Sea off the Dutch coast.
  • WW2 soldier Carman Edward GILLCASH from Prince Edward Island, who lost his life during the Battle of the Delfzijl Pocket in The Netherlands.
  • WW1 soldier George Stanley HENNESSEY from Prince Edward Island, who was in the 1st Canadian Engineers Battalion and survived the war.
  • WW1 soldier Chesley William HOWATT from Prince Edward Island, who was in the 50th Battalion Canadian Expeditionary Force, and survived the war.
  • WW2 soldier Richard Lea HOWATT from Prince Edward Island, who was a despatch rider and scout and survived the war.
  • WW1 soldier John David MACDONALD from Prince Edward Island, who was in the 26th Battalion (New Brunswick Regiment) and survived the war.
  • WW2 soldier Donald Charles MACKENZIE, from Nova Scotia, who was killed in The Netherlands.
  • WW2 soldier George ‘Ivan’ MACKINNON, from Prince Edward Island, who was killed in The Netherlands during the defence of the Nijmegen Salient.
  • WW2 soldier Michael Joseph ‘Joe’ MCKENNA, from Prince Edward Island, who was killed in The Netherlands during the Battle of Rha.
  • WW2 soldier James ‘Frank’ MOSSEY, from Prince Edward Island, who was killed in The Netherlands while serving in the Carleton & York Regiment.
  • WW2 soldier Harold Gordon SABEAN, from Nova Scotia, who was killed in The Netherlands while serving in the Carleton & York Regiment.
  • WW1 soldier William ‘James’ SEAMAN from Prince Edward Island, who was in the 105th Overseas Battalion and survived the war.

…. Stories About Servicemen From Outside The Maritimes…

  • WW2 soldier Elie ANTONYSZYN, from Manitoba, who died on July 15, 1945 in The Netherlands.
  • WW2 soldier Albert Joseph COTE, born in Quebec but grew up in Ontario, who died on October 5, 1944, of wounds received during the Battle of the Leopold Canal in a prisoner of war field hospital in Germany,
  • WW2 soldier Cecil Edward GOODREAU, from Ontario, who was killed in Germany during the Battle of Keppeln on February 26, 1945.
  • WW2 soldier Andrew KERELCHUK, born in Manitoba but who moved to Ontario, and who was killed in Germany on April 19, 1945, during the Battle of the Küsten Canal.
  • WW2 soldier Sam MATVICHUK, born in Saskatchewan but lived in Alberta, who was killed in The Netherlands on April 14, 1945 during the Battle of Groningen.
  • WW2 soldier Neville William NESBIT, from Manitoba, who was killed in Germany on May 2, 1945 following the Battle for Bad Zwischenahn.
  • WW2 soldier Anthony PETTA, from Ontario, who was killed in Germany during the Battle of Hochwald Gap on March 2, 1945, but whose death is recorded as March 3, 1945.
  • WW2 soldier John RUSNAK, from Manitoba, who died in Germany on November 22, 1945 following a collision between his despatch motorcycle and a farm wagon.
  • WW2 soldier John ‘Jack’ Langford WALKER, from Ontario, who was killed in Bad Zwischenahn, Germany on May 1, 1945.

…In Conversation And More….

  • We shared a few adventures that we had in North Bay in May, including people we met, a visit to the North Bay Cenotaph, and an Author Talk at the North Bay Public Library.
  • We wrote about the Author Talk at the Victoria Playhouse in Victoria-By-The-Sea in August.
  • We wrote about the Remembrance Day ceremonies we attended in Borden-Carleton and Kinkora, two Prince Edward Island communities.

…. Interviews To Highlight Search For Photos….

Pieter did several interviews:

  • On Friday, November 11, 2022, Pieter was interviewed by Todd van der Heyden of CTV news.  You can watch Military researcher identifies 200 fallen soldiers | CTV News at https://www.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=2561931
  • Charlotte MacAulay of the Eastern Graphic wrote about the successful photo search for WW2 soldier George ‘Ivan’ MACKINNON, who is buried in The Netherlands. The article, ‘Sturgeon soldier’s photo discovered in church’, ran in the newspaper on November 9, 2022. 
  • On Monday, November 7, 2022, Pieter was interviewed by Ceilidh Millar of CTV Atlantic News At 5 about the search for 4 soldiers of the North Nova Scotia Highlanders Regiment who died during the Battle of Bienen on March 25, 2022. You can read the article and watch the video.  See P.E.I. man identifying Canadian soldiers in the Netherlands | CTV News https://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/maritime-man-appealing-to-public-for-help-identifying-lost-canadian-soldiers-1.6143236
  • Kevin Rollason of the Winnipeg Free Press wrote about Pieter’s search for photos and featured the story of Indigenous soldier Thomas CHASKE, then listed the names of several other soldiers from Manitoba who are buried in The Netherlands.  The article, ‘A name without a face’, ran online on November 4, 2022 and in the print edition on November 5, 2022.  See https://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/2022/11/04/a-name-without-a-face
  • Charlotte MacAulay of the Eastern Graphic wrote about the photo search for WW2 soldier George ‘Ivan’ MACKINNON, who is buried in The Netherlands. The article, Researcher seeking photo of Second World War soldier, ran in the newspaper on September 21, 2022.  This search was successful.
  • Pieter was interviewed by Charlotte MacAulay of the Eastern Graphic, about the photo search for WW2 soldier James Frank MOSSEY, who is buried in The Netherlands.  The article, Researcher seeks photo of Souris soldier from Second World War, ran in the newspaper on June 1, 2022.  This search was successful.
  • Pieter and Daria were interviewed by Peter J. Wilson of the North Bay Nugget, about their research into soldiers buried in The Netherlands.  The article Couple devoted to telling fallen soldiers’ stories | North Bay Nugget ran in the online version on May 19, 2022 and in the print version on May 20, 2022.  See https://www.nugget.ca/news/couple-devoted-to-telling-fallen-soldiers-stories 
  • Pieter was interviewed by Marcel Vink of De Telegraaf, a newspaper in The Netherlands, about his research into Canadian soldiers buried in The Netherlands.  The article Zoektocht naar gezichten (Quest For Faces) ran in the newspaper on May 4, 2022 – Remembrance Day in The Netherlands. See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2022/05/04/article-in-de-telegraaf-quest-for-faces-zoektocht-naar-gezichten/
  • Pieter was interviewed by Charlotte MacAulay of the Eastern Graphic, about the successful photo search for WW2 soldier Barney McGuigan, who is buried in The Netherlands.  The article Search for teen soldier’s photo is successful, ran in the newspaper on January 13, 2022.  See https://www.peicanada.com/eastern_graphic/search-for-teen-soldier-s-photo-is-successful/article_eaee52fa-72e6-11ec-b539-d33f425bb7c3.html 

…. Letters To The Editor For Photo Searches….

Letters to the editor in various newspapers were written in the quest for a photo for:

… Successful Search For Photos …..

Many WW2 soldiers are buried in cemeteries in Europe.  Pieter continues to work with photo wish lists from Canadian War Cemeteries for WW2 soldiers buried in The Netherlands.  This year we also received photos and information on soldiers buried in Belgium. 

Photos of soldiers buried in Dutch cemeteries were forwarded to researchers there for their digital archive. Whenever possible, stories are featured on the blog but there is a backlog due to the success of Pieter’s research.  I can’t keep up! This year, photos were found for:

Buried in Holten Canadian War Cemetery in The Netherlands:

  1. Elie ANTONYSZYN
  2. William Eben BROWN
  3. Albert Joseph COTE
  4. John CULBERTSON
  5. Theodor ‘Ted’ HENSCHEL
  6. Andrew KERELCHUK
  7. Amil Adolph LARSON
  8. Donald Charles MACKENZIE
  9. Sam MATVICHUK
  10. Neville William NISBET
  11. Joseph Edmond ROBICHAU
  12. John RUSNAK
  13. Harold Gordon SABEAN
  14. John Langford ‘Jack’ WALKER
  15. William Henry ‘Barney’ WEBB

 Buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery in The Netherlands:

  1. Clifford BATEMAN
  2. John Joseph BOHON (BOHONKO)
  3. Charles ‘Marshall’ CARSON
  4. James Edward DUFFY
  5. Cecil Edward GOODREAU
  6. James Edward ‘Eddy’ DUFFY
  7. Marven Glenroy HARVEY
  8. Kitchener ‘Kitty’ LANGILLE
  9. John Richard ‘Jack’ MARACLE
  10. George ‘Ivan’ MACKINNON
  11. Marvin William MCGREGOR
  12. Laurie Douglas PAGE
  13. Wilfred Joseph ‘Willy’ POWER
  14. Anthony PETTA
  15. Louis Allan SEXTON

 Buried in Bergen Op Zoom Canadian War Cemetery in The Netherlands:

  1. Milton Evangeline LIVINGSTONE
  2. Robert K. VIDITTO

 Buried in an unmarked grave in The Netherlands following an aircrash:

  1. Rowan Charles ‘Bunky’ FITZGERALD

 Buried in Adegem Canadian War Cemetery in Belgium:

  1. Bruce Wilbur CHURCHILL
  2. David ‘Dave’ Stinson HENDERSON
  3. Ronald ‘Ronnie’ Sidney HOOLE

The YouTube Channel….

In 2022 the following videos were posted on the YouTube channel:  On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw

  • S3E1 Book Trailer for ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten’
  • S3E2 Photo Search-WW2 Soldier Austin Havelock Munroe

…Thank you for your support and encouragement of this research project!…

As 2022 comes to an end, we would like to thank all who helped with researching these stories and contributed photos. We also thank readers of this blog, and the On The War Memorial Trail column in The County Line Courier, who suggested some of stories you’ve read.  A big thank you goes to Mike and Isabel Smith, owners of The County Line Courier. 

Thank you to all the families that contributed photos and stories. Thank you to Judie Klassen and Shawn Rainville who volunteered their time to help find families of soldiers through newspaper and online searches. Thank you to Don Smith for answering any aircraft and military flight questions we’ve had.

Thank you to the media who helped publicize the search for photos and information – Bay Today, CBC Radio’s Mainstreet PEI, CTV News, CTV Atlantic News, Dauphin Herald, De Telegraaf, Eastern Graphic, North Bay Nugget, The Guardian, and the Winnipeg Free Press.

Last, but not least, the YouTube channel and videos would not be possible without the invaluable support of post-production editor Wendy Nattress.  Wendy also designed and manages the book website.

….Happy Holidays

Pieter and I wish you all the best for the holidays and in 2023. May we never forget those who gave their lives for our freedom.

Xmas 2022 photo

Pieter’s research work continues. If you have photos or information to share, please email Pieter at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or send a tweet to @researchmemori1.  

© Daria Valkenburg

 

On The War Memorial Trail….. Remembrance Day On The Island

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November 13, 2022. Remembrance Week is always busy at our place. This year was a bit different as we gave a presentation featuring a few of the names listed on the Cenotaph outside the Borden-Carleton Legion, at the Legion’s Remembrance Day indoor service – prior to the placing of wreaths and crosses at the Cenotaph.

RCL Nov 11 2022 Presentation They Arent Just Names On A Cenotaph

This was the title of our presentation.

…11 photos are still to be found for the names on the Cenotaph….

There are 48 names from WWI and WWII listed on the Cenotaph outside the Borden-Carleton Legion.  Unfortunately, photos for 9 from WWI and 2 from WWII have not been found.  The story of each one has been told in previous postings on this blog.

Names still without faces from WWI

  • James CAIRNS, born in Kinkora
  • Leigh Hunt CAMERON, born in Albany
  • James Lymon CAMERON, born in Victoria
  • William Galen CAMPBELL, born in Wellington
  • Bazil CORMIER, born in Tignish
  • Joseph Arthur DESROCHES, born in Miscouche
  • Charles LOWTHER, born in North Carleton
  • Arthur Clinton ROBINSON, born in Tryon
  • Harry ROBINSON, born in Augustine Cove

Names still without faces from WWII

  • Leonard Stephen AVERY, born in Bedeque
  • Ernest Ramey GALLANT, born in Borden

 … We attend Remembrance Day ceremonies in Borden-Carleton and Kinkora…..

November 11, 2022 was a cool day for the Remembrance Day service at the Legion in Borden-Carleton, Prince Edward Island.

CIMG6027 Nov 11 2022 Borden Carleton Legion Ceremony Pieter and Danny Bernard

Pieter and Danny Bernard walk to lay a wreath at the Cenotaph in Borden-Carleton on behalf of the Government of Canada. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

CIMG6028 Nov 11 2022 Borden Carleton Legion Ceremony Pieter lays wreath

Pieter placed the wreath on behalf of the Government of Canada at the Cenotaph in Borden-Carleton. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

CIMG6035 Nov 11 2022 Cenotaph at Borden Carleton Legion

Flag bearers Arthur Ranahan (left) and George Palmer (right) are flanked by representatives from the Fire Brigade and RCMP at the Cenotaph in Borden-Carleton. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

In the afternoon, members of the Legion attended the Remembrance Day ceremony in Kinkora.

CIMG6039 Nov 11 2022 Kinkora Pieter and Heath MacDonald

Pieter Valkenburg with The Honourable Heath MacDonald, MP for Malpeque after laying a wreath on behalf of the Government of Canada in Kinkora.

…Remembrance Day didn’t end with the two ceremonies!…

After we returned home in the late afternoon, cold and tired, we learned that CTV News wanted to interview Pieter during a live broadcast.  So, after a short rest, Pieter was interviewed by Todd van der Heyden of CTV news.  You can watch Military researcher identifies 200 fallen soldiers | CTV News at https://www.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=2561931

Remembrance Day may be over for another year, but Pieter’s research work continues.  If you have photos and information to share about Canadian soldiers, please contact Pieter at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or send a tweet to @researchmemori1.

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/ or email me at dariadv@yahoo.ca and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Front cover OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEuropeDaria’s book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten‘ is available in print and e-book formats.  Net proceeds of book sales help support research costs and the cost of maintaining this blog. For more information on the book, please see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/

You are also invited to subscribe to our YouTube Channel: On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw.

© Daria Valkenburg

On The War Memorial Trail….. ‘We’ll Never Forget Uncle Bunky’

October 12, 2022. Recently, Douwe Drijver, a researcher at the Stichting Missing Airmen Memorial Foundation, a non-profit volunteer organization based in Leeuwarden, The Netherlands, asked if Pieter could help find family of a WWII airman from Prince Edward Island. (For more information – in Dutch – on the Foundation, see www.luchtoorlogfriesland.nl )

This organization organized the unveiling of a memorial panel in Wons, The Netherlands to honour WWII pilot Elmer Bagnall MUTTART of Cape Traverse, Prince Edward Island, who is buried in Harlingen General Cemetery, and the crew of Halifax L9561.  (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2019/10/06/unveiling-of-the-memorial-panel-for-downed-ww2-plane-halifax-l9561-in-wons/)

Douwe asked if Pieter could find family of Rowan Charles FITZGERALD….who was born in Charlottetown on July 12, 1915 and has been missing since June 28, 1942….”  The plane he was on, “… Halifax W1175 of the 405th Vancouver Squadron RCAF came down in the Wadden Sea at 03:00 that morning. Only one crew member has a known grave….

Then Douwe surprised us by saying that the crew member with a known grave, Murray Ralph KLEISDORFF of Australia, “…. found his final resting place in Harlingen….” His grave is between 3 unknown graves, one of which may just contain the remains of Rowan Charles FitzGerald.  All four graves are in the row right behind Elmer Muttart!

…We meet family of Rowan Charles ‘Bunky’ FitzGerald….

Shortly after this request came in, retired music teacher Rowan FitzGerald got in contact, explaining that Rowan Charles, known in the family as ‘Bunky’, was his uncle.  Rowan’s sister Janet was visiting from Alberta and the two of them would like to meet to share photos and stories of their uncle.

CIMG5743 Aug 7 2022 Rowan Janet Fitzgerald Pieter

Pieter, left, with Janet FitzGerald and her brother Rowan FitzGerald.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

… ‘Bunky’ was born in Charlottetown….

Janet had prepared a summary of her uncle’s life. “Rowan Charles FitzGerald was the middle son of Geoffrey David FitzGerald and Flora Hope Wiggins.  He was born on July 12, 1915 in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, where he attended West Kent School and Prince of Wales College.  Rowan was active in sports. He played football, was a competitive speed skater, and played hockey with the Charlottetown Abbies and with a farm team in Colorado…..

Bunky Fitzgerald hockey picture

Bunky played hockey before enlistment.  (Photo courtesy of the FitzGerald Family)

… Bunky’s true character shone through in an anecdote….

In addition to hockey, Bunky was a keen speed skater.  Janet shared an anecdote that showed the true character of her uncle.  “The FitzGerald family loved competitive sports, but winning was never the most important thing.  I remember our father, T. L. ‘Babs’ FitzGerald, illustrating this with a story about his brother Bunky.  He was in a speed skating championship race.  He and one other contender were way out in front of the pack, neck in neck, as they rounded the turn beginning their last lap. 

The other man fell, and instead of skating on to victory, Uncle Bunky stopped, waited for his opponent to get back up on his skates, and then raced him to the finish line, winning by only a few strides.  When asked why he stopped when his opponent fell, he replied that he wanted to win fairly because he was the faster skater, not because his competition had an accident….

… Bunky enlisted with the RCAF in 1940….

From 1934 to 1935, Bunky was a signaller with the 8th Medium Battery Militia in Charlottetown. He later moved to Ontario, where he worked as a prospector for Kirkland Hudson Bay Mining in New Liskeard, an area rich in cobalt.

On July 1, 1940, Bunky enlisted with the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) in Toronto, Ontario.  Janet noted that he “….began training in July 1940 ...

From January 5, 1941 to March 31, 1941 he attended an Air Observers course in Malton, Ontario.

Rowan Charles Fitzgerald in uniform in snow in Malton ON 1941

Bunky beside an Avro Anson plane in Malton, Ontario while attending an Air Observers course in 1941.  (Photo courtesy of the FitzGerald Family)

Once the Air Observers course was completed, Bunky was sent to the No. 1 Bombing and Gunnery School in Jarvis, Ontario where he took the AB Initio Bombing and AB Initio Gunnery courses.  Both were completed on May 12, 1941.

From Jarvis, Bunky went to the No. 1 Air Navigation School in Rivers, Manitoba for an Air Observers Advanced Navigation Course, which he completed on June 9, 1941.

improved_photo Bunky Fitzgerald

Bunky in uniform after receiving his Air Observer wings. (Photo courtesy of the FitzGerald Family.  Photo colourization by Pieter Valkenburg)

… Bunky was sent overseas and joined the RAF pool….

On June 29, 1941 Bunky left for the United Kingdom, and was ‘attached to the RAF from the RCAF’ as of July 28, 1941.  (RAF referred to Royal Air Force.)

Janet recorded that Bunky was “first with the 77th Squadron and in March 1942 was assigned to the 405 Squadron at Pocklington Air Force Base near York, England…

… Bunky’s father and brother also served ….

Among the treasures that Janet shared were letters that Bunky’s mother had saved.  In a May 9, 1942 letter written from Pocklington, Bunky wrote about a reunion with his father and brother Babs, who were both in the army and in England at the time.

… Dear Mother,

As you probably guessed from our telegram the three of us have finally gotten together.  In my last letter I told you about missing them when I was on leave.  Well, they got leave when they came back from their maneuvers and came up to see me.  I parked them in York and got to see them for the last three nights.  They left for London this morning.  We had a lot of fun.  It was sure good to get together again…

Unfortunately, it was the last time they met.

 … The last flight of Halifax W1175 LQ-Q ….

Janet’s account noted that “On June 27, 1942, flight W1175 LQ-Q left RAF Pocklington, piloted by Canadian F/Sgt William Field, at 23:32 hours on a mission to Bremen, Germany. Rowan FitzGerald was the navigator on the flight….

As the plane was returning from Bremen in the morning of June 28, 1942, it was hit by shellfire (flak) and crashed into a sandbank called ‘De Waard’ in the Wadden Sea, off the Dutch coast between the Island of Texel and the mainland, 15.5 km from Harlingen, in the province of Friesland.  There were no survivors.

The-Dutch-Wadden-Sea-Area

The Wadden Sea off the Dutch coast near Harlingen.  (Map source: https://www.researchgate.net/figure/The-Dutch-Wadden-Sea-Area_fig3_309826242)

The crew members were 3 Canadians, 1 Australian, and 3 British:

  • RCAF Flt Sgt W E N FIELD Captain (Pilot) – Canadian
  • RAF Sgt R F ANSELL (Flight Engineer) – British
  • RCAF Rowan Charles FITZGERALD (Navigator) – Canadian
  • RAAF Flt Sgt Murray Ralph KLEISDORFF (Air Bomber) – Australian
  • RAF Sgt E O SMITH (Wireless Air Gunner) – British
  • RCAF Flt Sgt J D AILEY (Air Gunner) – Canadian
  • RAF Sgt A DANBY (Air Gunner) – British

Douwe Drijver had explained in his request that only one crew member had been identified – Murray Ralph Kleisdorff of Australia.  For the next part of the story we had to look at records in the National Archives of Australia.

….Four bodies were buried in Harlingen General Cemetery…

The trail had run out for the information in Bunky’s service file, but reports related to the Australian crew member were available at the National Archives of Australia in Canberra.  The reports were not digitized, but when we asked Phillip Shovk of Sydney for help, he contacted Rod Covell, who lived in Canberra.  Rod and his wife Kaylene agreed to look into the files.

An investigation into the crash, based on German records, verified that a Halifax bomber matching the serial number of the plane used by W1175 crashed into the Wadden Sea on the night of June 27 into June 28, 1942.  “…Two days later, 4 corpses were recovered and as they possessed no identity, they were buried as unknown in Harlingen General Cemetery, Plot E, Row 1, Graves 3, 4, 5, 6...

After the war, the four graves were opened.  A December 29, 1948 report stated that “…only one of these could be identified….The six remaining crew members were therefore either lost at sea or at Harlingen as unidentified airmen in graves 3, 5, and 6….

What about Grave 4?  A June 22, 1948 report noted that “…the presence of RAAF dark blue material in Grave 4 indicates that ….Sgt M. R. Kleisdorff is buried there….”  Murray Kleisdorff’s headstone was amended.  The other 3 burials remain unknown.  Perhaps one holds Bunky’s remains?

Foto`s genomen op de begraafplaats van Harlingen (Harns) Prov Friesland (Fryslân). Door Remko de Jong (7)(1)

Harlingen General Cemetery in Harlingen, The Netherlands.  Murray Ralph Kleisdorff is second from the left in the front row.  The other 3 headstones are unmarked graves of airmen believed to be from the same flight.  (Photo credit: Remco de Jong)

The 6 men with no known grave are listed on the Runnymede Memorial, situated at Englefield Green, near Egham, 32 kms west of London, England. The memorial lists 20,450 members of the Air Forces of the British Commonwealth with no known grave.  (See https://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/remembrance/memorials/overseas/second-world-war/england/runnymede)

Janet ended her summary about her uncle’s life with “…Rowan Charles FitzGerald died 2 weeks prior to his 27th birthday. His descendants still hope to gain closure by locating his final resting place and ensuring his memory is preserved…

A few weeks after we met, Janet wrote us to say “…Rowan and I are so very grateful for your interest and time spent in piecing together Uncle Bunky’s story.  Thank you for all you are doing for our fallen boys and ensuring they are never forgotten….

Thank you to Rowan FitzGerald and Janet FitzGerald for sharing photos and information on their uncle, Remco de Jong for the photo from Harlingen General Cemetery, Angela Walker for contacting the FitzGerald family, Don Smith for identifying the Avro Anson plane in the photo of Bunky in Malton, Phillip Shovk for contacting Rod Covell, and Rod and Kaylene Covell for researching the crash report in the National Archives in Canberra, Australia.

If you have a story to tell, please let Pieter know. You can email him at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or send a tweet to @researchmemori1.

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/ or email me at dariadv@yahoo.ca and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Front cover OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEuropeDaria’s book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten‘ is available in print and e-book formats.  For more information see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/

You are also invited to subscribe to our YouTube Channel: On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw.

© Daria Valkenburg

The WW1 Soldier From Barton Whose Body Was Never Recovered

July 31, 2022. Most of the time Pieter is involved in a search for photos and family of WW1 or WW2 soldiers, a task that requires a great deal of research and luck.  Sometimes, however, the opposite happens, and he’s asked to find family and a soldier for a photo that has been ‘orphaned’ for one reason or another.

For a veteran, it can be difficult to ignore a photo that has been discarded or placed for sale in an auction or secondhand shop.  That’s exactly what happened when veteran Mario Henry, Sgt At Arms at the Borden-Carleton Legion, visited a pre-auction preview recently and spotted a photo of what looked to be a WW1 soldier.

….Photo of a WW1 soldier placed for auction…

improved_photo(4) shortliff

Photo of WW1 soldier Lloyd Shortliff.  (Photo credit and restoration: Pieter Valkenburg)

It was in an antique frame and was most likely a black and white photo that had been colourized with watercolour and framed, suggesting that at one time this was a treasured piece in someone’s home.

….The back of the photo identified the soldier and his family….

CIMG5692 Jun 28 2022 back of Shortliff photo

Back of photo with identifying information.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

A quick glance at the back of the photo had identifying information, which helped to uncover a soldier’s military service.  The information on the back stated: “Lloyd Shortliff, son of Emma (Dunbar) Shortliffe and Charles Shortliffe. Sisters Minerva and Gertrude (Mrs Joseph Foster).  He was missing in action September 17, 1916 in France.

….Who was Lloyd Shortliff?….

Mario contacted Pieter, who soon determined that the photo was of Lloyd Clifford SHORTLIFF, born April 12, 1891 in Barton, Digby, Nova Scotia, son of Charles Henry and Emma (nee Dunbar) Shortliff.

A farmer before enlisting in Sussex, New Brunswick on September 20, 1915 with the 64th Battalion, Lloyd left Halifax, Nova Scotia aboard the SS Adriatic on March 31, 1916, arriving in Liverpool, England on April 9, 1916.

On June 24, 1916 he was transferred to the 12th Battalion and sent to Shornecliffe Army Camp for further training. (See https://www.saltwoodkent.co.uk/the-canadian-at-shorncliffe-during-)

…Lloyd was sent to the front…..

Screenshot 2022-07-04 at 10-28-48 Vierstraat · Ypres Belgium

Blue line shows the route taken by the 24th Regiment as they moved from the Ypres area in Belgium towards France for the Battle of the Somme. (Map source: http://www.google.ca)

A few days later, on June 28, 1916, he was transferred to the 24th Battalion (Victoria Rifles of Canada) and sent to Belgium on July 12, 1916. The Regiment was part of the Canadian Corps manning the Western Front.

On August 28, 1916 the Regiment marched to Eperlecques, France for training on the new Lee-Enfield rifles, where they also trained in manoeuvres in preparation for what the troops would experience in the Battle of the Somme. (See map at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Map_of_the_Battle_of_the_Somme,_1916.svg)

On September 4, 1916, the Regiment went to Argues, France, and took a train to Conteville, before moving on towards Hérissart, and then to Albert, France, where the Regiment arrived on September 10, 1916 and were set up in tents.

The Somme front was near the village of Courcelette. Training began for an attack on the Sugar Refinery near Courcelette, which began on September 15, 1916.  By the next day, Battalion Headquarters was set up in a trench by the Sugar Refinery, in preparation for further attacks against the Germans. (See https://www.warmuseum.ca/firstworldwar/history/battles-and-fighting/land-battles/courcelette/)

Lloyd lost his life on September 17, 1916.  Unfortunately his body was never recovered and he is listed on the Canadian National Vimy Memorial.

….Could the photo be saved?….

Knowing that Lloyd Shortliff was listed on the Vimy Memorial was like waving a red flag at a bull for veterans Pieter and Mario.  Pieter has a special affinity for Vimy after we’d been there in 2017 to honour two soldiers from the Island that Pieter had researched.  (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2017/09/19/visiting-the-canadian-national-vimy-memorial/)

The photo couldn’t be resigned to the dustbin of history!  The value was in the antique frame, not the photo, and both men believed someone would buy the frame and discard the photo.

Mario contacted the auctioneer and asked if the seller would pull the picture out of the auction, pending further investigation.  The seller refused.

That seemed to be that ….. until Mario contacted Pieter to say that he had attended the auction and bought the picture.  Pieter went back to his research, to learn how Lloyd lost his life and to find his family.

CIMG5689 Jun 28 2022 Pieter and Mario with photo

Pieter (left) and Mario Henry (right) with the picture of WW1 soldier Lloyd Shortliff. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

….How did Lloyd Shortliff lose his life?…

Pieter wanted to know how Lloyd lost his life and why he was listed on the Vimy Memorial, since he didn’t die during the Battle of Vimy Ridge, which was in April 1917.

According to the war diary for the 24th Battalion for September 17, 1916, “… at 12:30 pm, orders were received from the Brigade that the Battalion, less one Company, were to attack the German front line, with our Right resting on the Baupame Road, and our Left with the 22nd Battalion in the vicinity of the Quarries.  The attack commenced at 5 pm…..

The soldiers  of ‘D’ Company, on the extreme right, “…were unable to reach their objective, many of them killed before they got over the parapet, and the men who did advance were held up in the German wire and shot down…

‘A’ Company was in the centre, and “…obtained their objective, but after severe fighting, the enemy bombed them out, working through from his main line…

By the time the fight was over, 9 officers and 330 other ranks of the 24th Battalion were dead, wounded, or missing and presumed dead, among them Lloyd Shortliff.  As his body was never recovered it appears he was among the soldiers who were bombed.

24th battalion WW1 112

Map of the Battle of Courcelette on September 17, 1916. Red arrow shows the Sugar Refinery where Lloyd Shortliff went missing.  (Map source: The 24th Battalion, C.E.F., Victoria Rifles of Canada, 1914-1919)

…Pieter found the family of Lloyd Shortliff….

Pieter’s research next focused on Lloyd’s descendants, and led to family member Trent Whittaker, whose grandmother was Gertrude Foster, Lloyd’s sister.  After explaining about the picture that Mario had rescued, he was surprised to learn that it was Trent who had put the photo in a garage sale as part of the clear out of a 200 plus year old farmhouse.  The family had a photo of Lloyd and the one put in the garage sale was a duplicate. Several ‘pickers’ had bought the goods and that was the last he saw of the picture.

This is a story many will find familiar.  Relatives die and families are left with an accumulation of ‘stuff’ that can become overwhelming.  In the purge, photos, letters, diaries, and other memorabilia can get discarded.

…. Lloyd is remembered on the Barton War Memorial…

IMG_5558R Jul 8 2022 Barton War Memorial

Barton War Memorial.  (Photo credit: Sandra Lent)

Lloyd Shortliff was bombed to smithereens in France, his remains never recovered, but he is listed on the Vimy Memorial in France, and Pieter discovered that he is also listed on the war memorial in Barton, Nova Scotia:  https://nshdpi.ca/is/digbyco/bartonwarm.html.  The Legion in Weymouth, Nova Scotia has expressed an interest in the picture after learning of its existence.

IMG_5566R Jul 8 2022 Barton War Memorial

Lloyd Shortliff is remembered on the Barton War Memorial. (Photo credit: Sandra Lent)

Sandra Lent of the Weymouth Legion visited the memorial and explained that it was “…located in Barton, at the head of a cemetery.  There are no other markings, such as the name of the cemetery, although it is well tended, and the pillar shaped monument is helpful for identification.  It is located a short distance north of the Barton post office, on the same side of the highway...

Thank you to Mario Henry for saving the photo which gave us a chance to tell Lloyd Shortliff’s story.  Thank you as well to Sandra Lent for taking the photos of the Barton War Memorial.  If you have a story to tell, please let Pieter know. You can email him at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or send a tweet to @researchmemori1.

….. More stories of ‘orphan’ soldier photos and artifacts …

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/ or email me at dariadv@yahoo.ca and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Front cover OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEuropeDaria’s book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten‘ is available in print and e-book formats.  For more information see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/

Upcoming Author Talk: Thursday, August 11, 2022 – Victoria-By-The-Sea, Prince Edward Island, part of the ‘Our Island Talks’ series, and hosted by Victoria Playhouse and Victoria Historical Association. Time: 2:00 pm.

You are also invited to subscribe to our YouTube Channel: On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw.

© Daria Valkenburg

On The War Memorial Trail In North Bay….. The North Bay Cenotaph In Memorial Park

CIMG5568 May 18 2022 Pieter and Don at North Bay Memorial

Pieter and Don Coutts by a section of the Wall of Honour in Memorial Park in North Bay, Ontario.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

June 8, 2022. Whenever we visit a place, the local Cenotaph or monuments are always on the ‘must see’ list. North Bay, Ontario has the largest municipal war memorial in Canada. The 2000 installation of the Honour Wall listed the names of 636 men and women from the area that lost their lives. 

Exif_JPEG_420

Cenotaph in Memorial Park in North Bay, Ontario. You can see the Wall of Honour in the background. (Photo credit: Pieter Valkenburg)

…Soldiers buried in The Netherlands on the photo wish lists by Dutch researchers…

The names of 6 WWII soldiers from the North Bay area who are buried in The Netherlands were on photo wish lists from Dutch researchers, and four of these were on the Cenotaph:

  • Albert Joseph COTE
  • Cecil Edward GOODREAU
  • Anthony PETTA
  • John Langford ‘Jack’ WALKER

DSCN2391 A J Cote name is at the very bottom

Albert Joseph Cote, buried in the Canadian War Cemetery in Holten. (Photo credit: Don Coutts)


CIMG5565 May 18 2022 North Bay Memorial Cecil Goudreau

Cecil Edward Goodreau, buried in the Canadian War Cemetery in Groesbeek.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)


CIMG5564 May 18 2022 North Bay Memorial Anthony Petta

Anthony Petta, buried in the Canadian War Cemetery in Groesbeek.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)


DSCN2395 J L Walker name

John Langford ‘Jack’ Walker, buried in the Canadian War Cemetery in Holten. (Photo credit: Don Coutts)

All four of these soldiers will be featured in upcoming stories on this blog.  For a list of all known soldiers from the North Bay area who are buried in The Netherlands, see https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2022/05/15/on-the-war-memorial-trail-author-talks-in-north-bay/

….End Polio Now Tulips….

DSCN2414 May 18 2022 Tulips at North Bay Memorial Don Coutts

‘End Polio Now’ Tulips by the Cenotaph in Memorial Park in North Bay, Ontario. (Photo credit: Don Coutts)

While at the Cenotaph, we were surprised to learn that the tulips gracing the monument were ‘End Polio Now’ tulips.  Pieter grows several varieties of tulips in our yard, but this is one we had never heard of, so we asked Don Coutts for more information.

In the Fall of 2020, I had seen an article in The Guardian of how the Rotary Clubs on Prince Edward Island and Atlantic Canada had raised funds for Rotary International’s project to eradicate Polio in the world by selling the End Polio Now Tulip Bulb Boxes.

Around 1985 Rotary International took on a project to eradicate Polio throughout the world. My wife Nora’s uncle, Tom Elliott, was quite involved with the Rotary International in getting the project started. Tom was a senior manager with the North Bay Public District Health Unit at the time. At the present time, there are only a handful of Polio cases in the world.

In 2020, proceeds of $43,192 were made by Rotary Clubs on PEI and in the Atlantic Provinces, plus sales of the bulbs that had been made to the public separately. With matching grants, including the Melinda and Bill Gates’ Foundation for the Polio Eradication Programme, the total amount of money raised was $154,715.00 US Dollars.

 In 2021, members of our Rotary District 7010 Rotary Clubs in Ontario bought 665 Tulip Bulb Boxes. The proceeds were $10,267.60 and with matching grants the amount became $30,802.00 Canadian Dollars.

The three (3) Rotary Clubs in North Bay bought 132 Tulip Bulb Boxes and donated many. Other Rotary Clubs in the District bought the Tulip Bulbs and donated them to various organizations as well. 

There is only one supplier of the Tulip Bulbs in the world—–they come from Holland (this was music to Pieter’s ears!) Veseys Seed Company was involved and is the sole Canadian Distributor.  There are twenty-five (25) Tulip Bulbs in each box. (For more information, see https://www.veseys.com/ca/end-polio-now-tulip-76289.html)

Once Polio has been eradicated, the supplier of the Tulip Bulbs in Holland will no longer produce them….

I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that the ‘End Polio Now Tulips will be on Pieter’s bulb purchase list for this fall! 

Thank you to Don Coutts for taking us to the Cenotaph.  More North Bay adventures are coming up in the next posting.

Missed the previous posting about North Bay?  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2022/06/07/on-the-war-memorial-trail-in-north-bay-adventures-in-north-bay/

If you know of any soldiers from the North Bay area that are buried in The Netherlands please let Pieter know. You can mail him at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or send a tweet to @researchmemori1.  

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/ or email me at dariadv@yahoo.ca and ask for an invitation to the blog. 

Front cover OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEuropeDaria’s book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten‘ is now available.  For more information see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/

You are also invited to subscribe to our YouTube Channel: On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw

© Daria Valkenburg

On The War Memorial Trail….. Monument Unveiled In Gendringen

CIMG5542 May 5 2022 Pieter by Dutch flag for Liberation Day

Pieter by the Dutch flag which was put out for Liberation Day on May 5, 2022. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

May 9, 2022. Last year, stories of two WW2 soldiers who lost their lives in this area on March 30, 1945, were told.  Both Edmond COULOMBE of Manitoba and Alphonse ROBERT of New Brunswick served with Les Fusiliers Montreal and were killed on the same day.

We learned about the Gendringen connection when we were contacted by Maarten Koudijs, a volunteer researcher in this Dutch village along the German border with eyewitness accounts of how Robert and several members of his Regiment, including Coulombe, lost their lives when a shell exploded.

Missed the stories about Edmond COULOMBE and Alphonse ROBERT?  See:

 …The Gendringen Monument…

The Gendringen Monument

The Gendringen Monument was unveiled on May 6, 2022. Translation of the Dutch text: So that we never forget.  (Photo submitted by and courtesy of Maarten Koudijs)

On May 6, 2022 a monument was unveiled in Gendringen, The Netherlands.  Maarten Koudijs was kind enough to share some photos, and explained that “Nearly 500 people are commemorated on this memorial. 

·       23 Dutch Soldiers (from Genkoppen and Wisch) during the raid in May 1940

·       114 Citizens from Wisch

·       111 Citizens from Gendringen

·       30 Dutch citizens from the labor camps in Rees

·       27 forced labourers from Gendringen en Wisch

·       3 men from the resistance

·       46 Executed citizens of Rademakersbroek

·       12 Citizens working for Organization TODT (See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organisation_Todt)

·       41 Canadian military personnel and Air Force crew members

·       44 English soldiers and Air Force crew members

·       167 German soldiers who fell in the former municipality of Gendringen en Wisch (now Oude IJsselstreek)

·       1 Irish aircrew member flying for the RAF

·       1 Australian aircrew member flying for the RAF

·       2 New Zealand crew members flying for RAF

·       1 American Spitfire pilot flying for RCAF…. 

Note: RAF refers to Royal Air Force.  RCAF refers to Royal Canadian Air Force.

QR codes on panels

Panels by the monument have QR codes which provide information, plus buttons for audio descriptions in Dutch, English, and German.  (Photo submitted by and courtesy of Maarten Koudijs)

…Einar Victor Isfeld’s Son Attended the Unveiling…

Dennis Isfeld, son of Einar Victor ISFELD of the Queen’s Own Highlanders, attended the unveiling.  In a short video (under 3 minutes in both Dutch and English), he was interviewed with an eyewitness, who was 11 years old in 1945.

… Canadians commemorated on the Gendringen Memorial…. 

Maarten identified the names of 41 Canadians, including the Regiment they were serving in at the time of death and their final resting place. “The following Canadian soldiers were killed near the former municipality of Genkoppen. The former municipality of Genkoppen en Wisch is now OUDE IJsselstreek Achterhoek….

Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders Of Canada:

  • Harry Gregory BOZAK, died March 30, 1945, aged 20, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Francis Walter Andrew GLOSSOP, died March 30, 1945, aged 28, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Einar Victor ISFELD, died of wounds April 6, 1945, aged 30, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Anton W. KOHLRUSS, died March 31, 1945, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Frederick LISSOWAY, died March 30, 1945, aged 37, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • John Graham MACFIE, died March 30, 1945, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Vincent Albert MOORE, died March 30, 1945, aged 29, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Edward Oliver OBERG, died March 30, 1945, aged 19, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • William PROW, died March 30, 1945, aged 24, buried in Holten Canadian War Cemetery
  • Rocco Andrew SPEZIALI, died March 30, 1945, aged 26, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Bert J. THOMAS, died March 30, 1945, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Charles Joseph YOUNES, died March 30, 1945, aged 33, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery

Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal:

  • Roland A. BARRY, died March 30, 1945, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Joseph Paul Roland CARON, died of wounds April 5, 1945, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Edmond COULOMBE, died March 30, 1945, aged 22, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Jacques FORTIN, died March 30, 19455, aged 21, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Bernard Gaston PILON, died March 30, 1945, aged 19, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Alphonse ROBERT, died March 30, 1945, aged 21, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery

South Saskatchewan Regiment:

  • Peter HYDICHUK, died March 31, 1945, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • James Joseph MALONEY, died March 31, 1945, buried in Holten Canadian War Cemetery
  • Michael Joseph MCDERMOTT, died of wounds August 5, 1945, buried in Kilgobbin Burial Ground, Ireland
  • William SERNOWSKI, died March 31, 1945, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery

8th Canadian Recce Regiment (14th Canadian Hussars):

  • Laurenzo DUBE, died March 30, 1945, aged 26, buried in Holten Canadian War Cemetery
  • Leslie Albert DUCKETT, died March 30, 1945, aged 24, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • William LAWRYSYN, died March 30, 1945, aged 27, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Wilfred Charters STEWART, died March 29, 1945, aged 22, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery

Royal Canadian Artillery:

  • Ivan Rayburn NILSSON, died April 1, 1945, aged 21, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery

 Black Watch Of Canada:

  • Ernest George GRAHAM, died April 1, 1945, aged 29, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery
  • Robert WALKER, died of wounds April 1, 1945, aged 19, buried in Groesbeek Canadian War Cemetery

  Royal Canadian Air Force:

  • Duncan Eric CAMPBELL, died June 12, 1943, aged 28, buried in Wisch (Varsseveld) General Cemetery
  • Ralph Perry DAVIES, died June 12, 1943, aged 24, buried in Wisch (Varsseveld) General Cemetery
  • James HEATH, died June 17, 1944, aged 35, buried in Wisch (Varsseveld) General Cemetery
  • Allan Lockwood HOME, died May 13, 1943, aged 26, buried in Gendringen Roman Catholic Cemetery
  • Albert James MACLACHLAN, died June 12, 1943, aged 21, buried in Wisch (Varsseveld) General Cemetery
  • Hugh Columba MACNEIL, died May 13, 1943, aged 24, buried in Gendringen Roman Catholic Cemetery
  • James Edward MCDONALD, died June 2, 1942, aged 26, buried in Gendringen Roman Catholic Cemetery
  • Henry Augustin SHEEHAN, died May 13, 1943, aged 21, buried in Gendringen Roman Catholic Cemetery
  • Frederick John SMITH, died October 31, 1942, aged 21, buried in Gendringen Roman Catholic Cemetery
  • Louis-Phillipe Roma TAILLEFER, died June 12, 1943, aged 24, listed on the Runnymede Memorial in Surrey, England
  • Milford Glen THOMAS, died May 13, 1943, aged 26, buried in Gendringen Roman Catholic Cemetery
  • Rudolph ZEIDEL, died June 12, 1943, aged 21, listed on the Runnymede Memorial in Surrey, England

Thank you to Maarten Koudijs for letting us know about this commemoration events.  Do you have photos or information to share? Email Pieter at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or tweet to @researchmemori1.

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/ or email me at dariadv@yahoo.ca and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Front cover OnTheWarMememorialTrailinEuropeDaria’s book No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgottenis available in print and e-book formats.  For more information see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/

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© Daria Valkenburg

2021 Remembrance Week Events  

CIMG5423 Nov 11 2021 wreaths at Cenotaph Borden Carleton

Wreaths by the Cenotaph outside the Borden-Carleton Legion.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

November 14, 2021.  Remembrance Week is always busy at our place. This year, with the easing of some restrictions, we were able to be out and about in the community more than last year.

One of the events we attended was at the Tryon Cenotaph in Tryon, Prince Edward Island.

CIMG5373 Nov 10 2021 Tryon Cenotaph Remembrance Service (1)

The Honourable Heath MacDonald, MP for Malpeque, with Pieter at the Tryon Cenotaph following the Remembrance Ceremony on November 9, 2021. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

November 11, 2021 was a cold and crisp day, with the Remembrance Day service at the Legion in Borden-Carleton, Prince Edward Island, held outdoors. Pieter had been asked by the Member of Parliament for Malpeque to lay a wreath on behalf of the Government of Canada during the Remembrance Day Ceremony in Borden-Carleton.  This year, there was a change in MP with the retirement of Wayne Easter, and the election of Heath MacDonald.

CIMG5391 Nov 11 2021 Pieter walks with Govt of Canada wreath Borden Carleton

Pieter with the Government of Canada wreath to be placed on behalf of The Honourable Heath MacDonald, MP for Malpeque.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

CIMG5381 Nov 11 2021 Pieter salutes after placing wreath Borden Carleton

Pieter salutes after placing Government of Canada wreath on behalf of The Honourable Heath MacDonald, MP for Malpeque.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

CIMG5392 Nov 11 2021 Pieter salutes Borden Carleton

Pieter salutes after placing Government of Canada wreath on behalf of The Honourable Heath MacDonald, MP for Malpeque.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

CIMG5401 Nov 11 2021 Roger and Arthur Borden Carleton

Roger Leboeuf (left) and Arthur Ranahan (right) by the Cenotaph outside the Borden-Carleton Legion.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

It was a meaningful and well-organized ceremony.  In the afternoon, members of the Legion attended the ceremony in Kinkora.

Remembrance Day may be over for another year, but Pieter’s research work continues.  If you have photos and information to share about Canadian soldiers, please contact Pieter at memorialtrail@gmail.com, comment on the blog, or send a tweet to @researchmemori1.

..Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://bordencarletonresearchproject.wordpress.com or email me at memorialtrail@gmail.com and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Screenshot_2021-02-27 On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg

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© Daria Valkenburg

Borden-Carleton Legion Honours Veterans By Placing Flags At Their Graves

20210923_153745 Sep 23 2021 Pieter & Mario go over lists of veterans buried in cemetery

Pieter Valkenburg and Mario Henry go over the list of veterans buried at cemeteries.  (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

November 4, 2021.  In preparation for Remembrance Day, veterans from Borden-Carleton Branch #10 in Prince Edward Island visit cemeteries and cenotaphs in the area during the last week of October.  Comrades Mario Henry and George Palmer ensure that veterans buried at 9 cemeteries, and whose names are listed on 4 cenotaphs, receive a Canadian flag, for a total of 275 flags in 2021.

CIMG5341 Sep 27 2021 Pieter & George by George Hennessey grave Tryon Peoples Cemetery

Pieter with George Palmer by the grave of WW1 veteran George Hennessey at the Tryon People’s Cemetery in Tryon. (Photo credit: Daria Valkenburg)

The cemeteries covered by the area served by the Borden-Carleton Branch are:

  • Cape Traverse – Free Church of Scotland Cemetery (21 flags)
  • Cape Traverse – Methodist/United Church Cemetery (11 flags)
  • Central Bedeque – Central Bedeque Baptist Cemetery (7 flags)
  • Kinkora – St. Malachy’s Roman Catholic Cemetery (48 flags)
  • Lower Bedeque – Lower Bedeque Cemetery (19 flags)
  • North Tryon – North Tryon Presbyterian Cemetery (13 flags)
  • Searletown – Searletown United Cemetery (7 flags)
  • Seven Mile Bay – St. Peter’s Roman Catholic Cemetery (95 flags)
  • Tryon – Tryon People’s Cemetery (41 flags)

Flags are also placed at these Cenotaphs:

  • Augustine Cove Cenotaph (4 flags)
  • Borden-Carleton Cenotaph (1 flag)
  • Searletown United Cemetery Cenotaph (4 flags)
  • Tryon Cenotaph (4 flags)

If you see Canadian flags by graves, please do not disturb them. They are a mark of respect for a veteran’s service to Canada, and will be picked up about a week after November 11. Mario Henry asks that if a veteran’s grave was missed, or if a veteran has recently passed away, please contact the Legion, so that flags can be placed for next year. The Legion can be contacted by phone at 902-855-2660 (after 4 pm) or on its Facebook page. You can also contact Pieter, the branch Public Relations Officer, at memorialtrail@gmail.com.

…Want to follow our research?….

If you are reading this posting, but aren’t following the blog, you are welcome to do so.  See https://bordencarletonresearchproject.wordpress.com or email me at memorialtrail@gmail.com and ask for an invitation to the blog.

Screenshot_2021-02-27 On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg

You are also invited to subscribe to our YouTube Channel: On The War Memorial Trail With Pieter Valkenburg: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJ591TyjSheOR-Cb_Gs_5Kw.

© Daria Valkenburg