Tuesday 30 October 1917 We Lost 1,985
Major Talbot Mercier Papineau MC (Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry) is killed in action at age 34. He is a great grandson of the leader of the 1837 rebellion against British rule, though a strong proponent of greater French Canadian support of the Great War. He was also a Rhodes Scholar.
Lieutenant Hugh McDonald McKenzie DCM (Canadian Machine Gun Corps) is in charge of a section of four machine guns accompanying an infantry in an attack at Meetscheele Spur, near Passchendaele. Seeing that all the officers and most of the NCOs of an infantry company have become casualties and that the men are hesitating before a nest of enemy machine-guns, the lieutenant hands over his command to an NCO, rallies the infantry, organizes an attack and captures the strong-point. He then leads a frontal attack on a pill-box which is causing casualties. The pill-box is captured but he is killed. For his efforts Lieutenant McKenzie will be awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross.
Private Alexander Decoteau (Alberta Regiment) a Cree track and field athlete is killed in action at age 28. He finished eighth in the 5,000-meter race at the 1912 Stockholm Olympics. He became the first Native American Police officer in Canada in 1909 and the first motorcycle police constable becoming a Sergeant before enlisting in the army. He is also a member of the Edmonton Sports Hall of Fame.
Sergeant Frederick John Griffiths (Sherwood Foresters) is killed in action at age 44. He is a Welsh association football player as a goalkeeper, he won two caps for the Welsh national team. Griffiths began his career with the Blackpool-based club South Shore. He went on to play for other Lancashire-based clubs Clitheroe, Blackpool and Stalybridge Rovers. In 1900, while on the books of Blackpool, he played for Wales in international matches against Scotland and England, making him the first Blackpool player to win an international cap. He later moved south to join Millwall Athletic before moving across London to join Tottenham Hotspur, then playing in the Southern Football League. In 1901 Griffiths returned to Lancashire to join Preston North End of The Football League. He made ten league appearances for the club before once more returning to London to play for West Ham United in 1902. He replaced William Biggar in goal after Biggar conceded five goals in a defeat to Wellingborough Town, and remained the club’s first-choice goalkeeper for two seasons. In the summer of 1904 he joined New Brompton, where he spent two seasons, making over 50 first team appearances and serving as club.
Today’s losses include:
- A Victoria Cross winner
- A Rhodes scholar and great grandson of the 1837 rebellion leader in Canada
- A 1912 Olympian and member of the Edmonton Sports Hall of Fame
- A Welsh football international
- Multiple families that will lose two sons in the Great War
- A man whose father died on service as Bandmaster of the Grenadier Guards
- A man whose father will be killed in the Oct 1918 sinking of RMS Leinster
- A Military Chaplain
- An actor
- A nephew of the 1st Chairman of the Essex County Council
- Multiple sons of member of the clergy
- The son of a writer
- The son of a Baronet
- The son of a Justice of the Peace
- A man whose nephew will be killed in the Second World War
Today’s highlighted casualties include:
- Captain Arnold Edwin Bare MVO (London Regiment) is killed at age 36. He commanded the Guard of Honor to the King in August 1916 and is a holder of the Territorial Force Efficiency Medal. He joined the Artist Rifles in 1897 and volunteered for overseas service on 4th August 1914 and went to France in October 1914. His son will be killed in February 1944.
- Lieutenant Harold Edward Agar (Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry) is killed in action by a sniper at age 26. His brother will die of wounds as a prisoner of war next August.
- Lieutenant Guy Masterman Helme (Coldstream Guards) dies of wounds at age 19. His brother was killed last June.
- Lieutenant Hedley Bruce New (Essex Regiment attached Royal Flying Corps) is killed at age 24. His brother will be killed in May 1918.
- Lieutenant Andrew Johnston (Royal Field Artillery attached Royal Flying Corps) is killed. He is the nephew of ‘Sir’ Andrew Johnston 1st Chairman of the Essex County Council and ‘Sir’ R Chalmers.
- Lieutenant Robert Arthur Abbs Simpson (Northumberland Fusiliers) dies of wounds received in action at age 38. He is the son of the Reverend Robert Simpson.
- Lieutenant John Murray (Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders) is killed at age 25. He is the son of the writer John Murray.
- Lieutenant Wilfred Dann (Gloucestershire Regiment) dies of wounds at age 32. His brother was killed in August 1916.
- Lieutenant Mark Webber Williams (Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry) is killed at age.24. His brother will die on service in 1920.
- Chaplain the Reverend Harry Dickinson (attached London Regiment) is killed in action at age 32.
- Second Lieutenant Donald Vaughan (Liverpool Regiment) is killed at age 24. His father Frank Vaughan will be killed kin the sinking of RMS Leinster in October next year.
- Second Lieutenant Ralph George Barnes (London Regiment) is killed in action at age 32. His brother was killed in November 1914.
- Sergeant James Henry Stanners (Royal Fusiliers) is killed at age 32. He is a long time member of the actors companies of ‘Sir’ Frank Benson and Laurence Irving.
- Lance Corporal James Outram Morris (London Regiment) is killed at age 31. He is the son of the Reverend William Morris Vicar of Sydenham.
- Lance Corporal Edward Ducarel Palmer (London Regiment) is killed at age 20. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Frederick Archdale Palmer 6th
- Lance Corporal Horace Percy Bridge (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed in action at age 22. His brother was killed twenty-six days earlier.
- Acting Lance Corporal Ernest Henry Aldwinckle (Princess Patricia’s Light Infantry) is killed at Passchendaele Ridge at age 29. His brother was killed last year at Beaumont Hamel.
- Private Oscar John Boon (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 20. His brother was killed in January 1915.
- Private William Patterson (Bedfordshire Regiment) is killed at age 24 in Palestine. His brother died on service in September
- Private Francis O T Matthews (British Columbia Regiment) is killed at age 20. He is the son of the late Reverend George Matthews.
- Private Leonard Charles Methuen (Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry) is killed at age 25. His brother will be killed in September 1918.
- Private William Erin Miller (London Regiment) is killed at age 31. He is the son of William Francis Miller JP and his nephew Squadron Leader William Erin Miller Dean will be killed in January 1945.
- Private Harold Penry Garnons Williams (London Regiment) is killed at age 19. His brother was killed on HMS Hampshire last year and they are sons of the Reverend Arthur Garnons Williams.
- Private Victor Hampden Heron (London Regiment) is killed at age 22. He assisted in making anti-tetanus serum for the troops.
- Rifleman William S F Edwards (London Regiment) is killed at age 19. His father died on service as a Bandsman in the Grenadier Guards in October 1915.
- Private William Niven Steadman (Alberta Regiment) dies at age 27. His brother was killed in April of this year and they are sons of the Reverend W Steadman.
- Private William Clare Sample (Alberta Regiment) is killed in action at age 28 during an enemy artillery barrage just four days after his birthday and the day his younger brother was killed.