ELLERAAS, GORDON ALBERT

Birthdate
Birthplace
Preeceville, Saskatchewan, Canada
Age
24
Parents
Son of Ole Jorgen and Winnie Marie Elleraas of Preeceville, Saskatchewan, Canada
Religion
Presbyterian
Occupation
Logger
Service number
M/31786
Engagement
1940-10-11, Edmonton, Alberta. Canada
Disembarked
1944-07-06, France
Date of death
1944-09-08
Died
France, Died of wounds
Force
Regiment (Fallen buddies)
Awards
Calgary Highlanders, R.C.I.C.
Plot 3 | Row E | Grave 7

"A NOBLE EXAMPLE WAS HIS LIFE FAITHFUL TO EVERY DUTY. HE IS AT REST IN HEAVEN"

Military grave
Additional info

Awarded one Good Conduct Badge on October, 11, 1942.

Promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal on February 20, 1943.

Reverts to the rank of Private at own request on April 26, 1943.

Overseas on May 14, 1943.

Assigned to The Calgary Highlanders on June 18, 1943.

Promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal on August 4, 1944.

Wounded on September 8, 1944 and died as a result of multiple shell fragment wounds to the hip and left leg.

The Calgary Highlanders war diary reports on September 8, 1944:
Bourbourgville, France
Weather: Strong wind and heavy rain, cold.

During the early hour of the morning the Battalion continued to hold fast and, with all the very much wide awake, we awaited 0700 hrs to push on. "D" Coy, followed by "C" Coy followed by "B" Coy and then "A" Coy, in a plan of coy 'bites', started to move at its appointment hour of 0700 hrs.

"D" Coy passed its start point dead on time and was on its objective, Les Planches 1278 (Rue Saint Georges Cd 17), by 0840 hrs. This report simply astounded Command OP but nevertheless was sure. Charlie Coy was then given 'green' and away they went arriving at their objective, the second bite, road junction 1278 North of Les Planches, in record time but bumping into stiff opposition along the route.

Baker and Able Companies were then ordered ahead to their objectives but this was just about changed when another, later proven false, report arrived saying Loon Plage was clear and to 'crack on'. Lieutenant-Colonel D.G. MacLauchlan feeling this report, through other sources, was not true, and certainly at the time conflicting with our own portion of the 2 Coy's in position, hesitated and rightly so. The report was soon reported untrue and instead of running headlong into a hornets nest we continued on with our original plan. Charlie and Dog Companies came under terrific shell-fire but hung on.
Soon Baker Company was on its way and when it came even with Charlie Company the enemy turned everything, within the vicinity, loose upon the crossroads. Movement forward then became very slow and tedious.
Higher formation kept bothering us to 'crack on', little realising the difficulty being experienced. Able Company kept tight on Baker Company's heel throughout the advance.

We must give great credit to the Artillery and Heavy Mortars, plus our own Mortars, for the very valuable support they gave us throughout the attack. They were hampered somewhat by ammo shortage and it is hoped this situation will be rectified shortly.

Our Anti-Tank Platoon had their first real workout to-day and had a regular field-day. They sniped everything in sight and Major Del Harrison is still boasting about the grand job the 6 pounders did when he drew their fire on to the church in Loon Plage which he suspected as an enemy O.P. 

The Anti-Tank ran short of ammo and Captain Mark Tennant rushed a further supply to their positions.

Finally, advance became so slow because of the heavy MG and shell-fire from almost directly North and South that Lieutenant-Colonel D.G. MacLauchlan ordered Dog Company, who were bedded in around Les Planches, to push around the left flank and attempt an attack on Loon Plage from the West.

Dog Coy did very well and managed to get into an area 500 metres from their original objective in the centre of Loon Plage. However, this advance was not without casualties and they finally consolidated in and around farm buildings, 120800 (N316 - Rue du Vieux Chemin de Gravelines, Loon Plage, France). Jerry shelled this spot and poured machine gun fire into the buildings itself. 

The Le Régiment de Maisonneuve were then ordered to assist us by moving 3 Coy's from Bourbourgville northwards along the road running parallel to our axis but 500 to 1000 metres East of us. They took some give hours to even get to a point 1500 metres up the road from Bourbourgville. They did not assist us in any way to clean up our trouble from this right flank and we to continue without help.

'Soon', around 2400 hrs, we pulled our 3 most forward Coy's "A", "B" and "D", back to a more restricted area near Charlie Coy, ending up with Charlie Coy on its original spot, road junction 1278, "D" Coy 1200 metres on its left rear and "B" and "A" 500 metres North of the other two respective positions.

The draw back was necessary from several angles, one of which was the low Coy strengths, "A","B" and "D" Coy's strength each about 30. Another, the men had to be fed as it was some 42 hrs for them to be without food and they could not be fed in the forward position. they could not possibly get any further forward so Brigadier McGill drew us to a spot, as stated above, a distance of a few hundred metres back and here the men fed and received a few hours attempted sleep by a series of shifts.

The enemy had been seen digging in along the railroad running parallel to out axis. some 300 metres East and this flank was watched very cautiously. The only trouble experienced from here was continual machine gun fire and our Companies took heavy toll of snipers as they tried to work into our lines.

Captain George Stott and Lieutenant Bacon, of Support Coy, deserve a lot of credit for the fine job they performed in getting forward around 2300 hrs to the isolated Companies and leading them to their rear areas.

ELLERAAS, GORDON ALBERT
Gordon on the left. Source: Findagrave