1924-09-03, South Hampton, United Kingdom
Son of Fredrick John and Emily Eva Gardner of Lakeview, Ontario, Canada
Church of England
Rod man
Service number
1943-09-03, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
1944-06-10, France
Date of death
Netherlands, Killed in action
Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders, R.C.I.C.
Plot 7 | Row B | Grave 4


Military grave
Additional info

Wanted to join the Parachute Battalion but did not qualify.

Donated blood to Red Cross on October 13, 1943.

Qualified Driver I/C Class 3 (Wheeled) on April 13, 1944.

Overseas on April 30, 1944.

Assigned to the Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders on June 10, 1944.

The Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders war diary reports on October 10, 1944:
Weather cloudy but mild.

0900 hrs: Since 0530 hrs, excepting brief intervals, we are being continually fired on by Heavy Arty and cannot move. C.O. asks for Skylark. The enemy may be mounting a counter attack. Ration supply and the beaches are considerably under fire.

0930 hrs: Under very heavy fire, cannot move. The plans for attack cannot proceed until the enemy guns are destroyed. We need someone in the air to do some spotting. Rations can now be picked up at the location were Bde was yesterday. (Field between Scheldedijk and Appelzakweg, Netherlands.)

1000 hrs: A Platoon of enemy Infantry advances over target area 403. Fire from Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa is asked for on area 162157 (Westlangeweg/ Vossekaai, Hoofdplaat, Netherlands). In five minutes time the targe 403 in shot. Enemy counter attacks from the direction 156159 (Westlangeweg, just East of Vossekaai), but are eventually repulsed effectively. North Nova Scotia Highlanders are going to move a Coy to ref 165136 (Schenkeldijk/ Hoofdplaatseweg). This will improve "B" Coy's position. We hear 7 Recce (17th Duke of York's Royal Canadian Hussars) and 8 Bde (Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, North Shore (New Brunswick) RegimentLe Regiment De La Chaudiere) are to land and help us. Enemy guns are reported setting up on road 157159 to 152161 (field between Westlangeweg and Inlaag, East of Hoofdplaat). We call for defence fire, West to East toward the town (Hoofdplaat, Netherlands).

1130 hrs: Enemy is reported coming down road to the West in strength on area of target 275. 3" Mortars are to engage the area 158158 (Westlangeweg, just East of Vossekaai) now. Target 403 is fired. 

1155 hrs: There may be a slight delay in the North Nova Scotia Highlanders operation due to the fact that Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders are using up a lot of Shelldrake. The Highland Light Infantry of Canada have taken about 100 prisoners and clearing out as they go. Everything is satisfactory on their front. The North Nova Scotia Highlanders also have another 100 prisoners to their credit.

1200 hrs: The counter attack on the Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry Highlanders has been broken up... 'Good Show' respons the Brigadier. The unit is dealing with the residue now.

1225 hrs: The enemy is forming up in front of the SDG on target 403, and the unit contacts "D" Coy of Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa. The target 403 is fired most effectively, killing a 'bunch of boche'. An enemy MG has infiltrated between "C" and "B" Coy's. "B" Company is to engage it.

1230 hrs: The Highland Light Infantry of Canada went down about an hour ago to the 'tough spot' ...and it now pinned down by MG fire and shell fire.

1245 hrs: "B" Coy now has moved to road South of Hoofdplaat. "C" Coy is being attacked. They are being fired on by Anti Tank gun believed to be on of the guns previously reported to be digging in. Artillery are to engage a 20mm gun at 147152 (Hogewegdijk at mini camping Scheldehoeve) which is holding up the NNSH attack.

1315 hrs: The C.O. reports "Attack on strongpoint by the dyke on my right effective with use of 'peashooter'. "C" Coy has reached its objective, captured the 20mm gun and taken 50 prisoners. On the R/T Brigadier Rockingham quips 'Save me a bottle of brandy'."

1320 hrs: The NNSH are now moving into the area SEAL (target 431). The HLI are having trouble on their left flank with one child pinned down.

1325 hrs: The unit is now getting 'Hell' from very heavy guns.

1330 hrs: Area heavily shelled. "B" Coy and "C" Coy are shelled from the West, probably Breskens, Netherlands by heavy guns. "C" Coy report that shells which appear to be duds are, in reality, delayed action. The C.O. at this point is quotable 'I've got 40 or 50 prisoners. I have a notion to them out on the road and let the buggers take it'. No rations, petrol or ammunition yet on the beach. Due to the bad weather the Troops are not to expect air support.

1443 hrs: The unit reports 'Skylark was over. He seems to keep the big guns quiet. If possible we'd like to keep that fellow overhead. Every time he buggers off the guns open up.'  The SDG are being badly cut up by this shell fire, and have suffered quite a few casualties. Two POW's captured on the unit front were carrying man-packed flame throwers. 

1417 hrs: The shelling is extremely heavy. The unit requests the Brigadier to get 'that aircraft' up immediately.

1430 hrs: Another enemy attack is reported forming up at task 403 area 168159 (Dijkeputten/ Havenstraat, Hoofdplaat). SP gun is also believed to have moved into area of DF 301.

1440 hrs: Arty support has been given us. We will soon need reinforcements as we are gradually being eaten away. Forward flanks are suffering heavy casualties. Counter attacking constantly... practically hand to hand.

1520 hrs: The heavy DF appears to have held the enemy once more. A "D" Coy Platoon has suffered heavy casualties. Our request for air support has been granted. "C" Coy has now completely cleared the area of the strongpoint.

1700 hrs: NNSH are unable to take their objective 161142 (Zuidlangweg/ Wilhelminadijk, Hoofdplaat). This leaves our left flank exposed. "B" Coy attempts to clear it up. Lieutenant Jeffs is wounded. Rain and mist.

1730 hrs: Enemy is moving toward "B" Coy at 156154 (Westlangeweg/ Zuidlangeweg, Hoofdplaat).

1740: Under heavy shell fire. Enemy is firing from Vlissingen harbour, Netherlands (Other side of the Western Scheldt river) as he has done all day. We can see the flash of the guns as darkness falls. We evacuated 50 civilians. 

2100 hrs: We learn with pleasure that Brigadier Rockinham has been awarded the DSO, Distinguished Service Order.

Temporary burial 37 Allies WW2 Hoofdplaat
Temporary burial 37 Canadian casualties. Farm P. de Clerck. Westerscheldedijk, Plaskreek, Thomaespolder, Netherlands.