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Remembering World War II
Edward Francis Arab Lieutenant Lincoln and Welland Regiment, R.C.I.C. 1939-45 Star, France and Germany Star, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal and Clasp, War Medal 1939-45. September 6, 1915 Halifax, Nova Scotia August 7, 1942 Halifax, Nova Scotia 26 5 feet, 6 inches Medium Brown Brown Single Barrister at Law Roman Catholic Senora Arab (Mother) Halifax, NS October 25, 1944 29 Bergen op Zoom Canadian War Cemetery, Netherlands 3. D. 12. Commemorated on Page 238 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance Displayed in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower in Ottawa on May 20 Edward Francis Arab was the son of Louis Arab (1894-1961) and Senora (Sadie) Murina (Assiff) Arab (1894-1960) of Halifax, NS. He was the brother of Anne Catherine Arab (married Raymond Hanson) (1917- 2014) and Arthur Joseph Arab (married Elizabeth “Libby” McTague) (1919–2013). His paternal grandfather, Abraham Arab (1862-1945), was the first villager from Diman (Lebanon) to settle in Nova Scotia. Edward attended St Patrick’s High School, and Dalhousie University obtaining a Bachelor of Arts in 1935. In 1937, at the age of twenty-two, he was one of the youngest to graduate, with honours, from Dalhousie Law School. His athletic endeavours included soccer, swimming, and boxing. Among his athletic achievements was the Maritime Inter-scholastic Boxing Championship for his weight for two years running. He participated in debating and as part of an undefeated team and attended debating tournaments throughout the Maritime Provinces. He also served with the News Department of the Dalhousie Gazette. Numerous articles on Edward’s debating skill and participation in boxing can be found throughout the archives of the newspaper. The Dalhousie Gazette is the oldest college newspaper in Canada, established in 1868. He opened his own law practice and gained a reputation for working on cases that combated prejudice and racism. He firmly stated that no immigrant, African-American, or person of poverty should be refused, regardless if they could pay. His law office was situated at 166 Hollis Street, Halifax. Edward was proud of his Lebanese heritage and In 1938 he was a founding member and the first president of the Canadian Lebanon Society. His friend, Lenoard Kitz, the Mayor of Halifax in 1955-1957 described Edward as “independent, aggressive, clear-thinking and a very dear friend”. As a student and later as a Halifax lawyer, prior to his enlistment with this Active Military service, Edward was active in military training. On October 15, 1931 Edward enlisted with the Dalhousie University COTC, Regiment No. 20 and on April 29, 1933 began training in the Non-Permanent Active Militia of Canada in Halifax. On November 23, 1939, with three years of Cadets with Dalhousie COTC and two years of annual training he completed his military training until October 3, 1940. From May 16, 1942 until May 30, 1942 he completed fifteen days training at Aldershot. He enlisted on August 7, 1942 with the Canadian Active Service Force as a Reinforcement Officer (PEI Highlanders) and was assigned to the Officers Training Centre at Brookville, Ontario between August 14, 1942 and November 13, 1942. He was then posted to A-14 Infantry (A) Training Centre at Aldershot, NS. On August 29, 1943 he was granted the rank of Lieutenant. His training in Canada, prior to going overseas, included courses in Camouflage (July 1943 in Bedford, NS), Jungle Warfare (December 1943 in Prince George, BC) and Mountain Warfare in January 1944 in Terrace, BC). He disembarked in the United Kingdom on June 20, 1944 and on September 2, 1944 he departed England, disembarked in France on September 3, 1944 and was taken on strength with the Lincoln and Welland Regiment in the field, on September 15, 1944. Lieutenant Arab was killed in action on October 25, 1944 while serving in Holland during the Battle of the Scheldt. The Lincoln and Welland Regiment moved against the enemy between Esschen and Huijbergen. He was leading soldiers forward when they came under heavy fire. Wounded in the leg, he fell back and once medics attended to the wound he again pushed forward. The platoon, encountered fierce opposition and he and six members of the Regiment were killed in action. They were initially buried in Huijbergen, a village in the Dutch province of North Brabant, about nine kilometres south- east of Bergen op Zoom, close to the Belgian border. In 1945 their remains were reburied in the Bergen op Zoom Canadian War Cemetery, Netherlands. In 1949 the City of Halifax named a street in memory and commemoration of the service and sacrifice of Lieutenant Edward Francis Arab. Excerpt from Halifax Council minutes, 1949:
Edward Francis Arab
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Name: Rank: Service: Citation(s): Date of Birth: Place of Birth: Date of Enlistment: Place of Enlistment: Age at Enlistment: Height: Complexion: Eye Colour: Hair Colour: Marital Status: Trade: Religion: Next of Kin: Date of Death: Age at Death: Cemetery: Reference:
"Could I have your consideration for the name of Edward Arab to be used for a street in the new Westmount subdivision. Mr. Arab was born and brought up in the City of Halifax. He attended St. Patrick’s School and later Dalhousie University. He was a winner of many prizes for scholastic efforts while at high school, and was a leader for two years of the entire class at Dalhousie Law School where he graduated as one of the youngest lawyers in the Province of Nova Scotia. It was not only in the academic field that he was outstanding. Among his athletic achievements was the Maritime Inter-scholastic Boxing Championship for his weight for two years running. Shortly after taking up the practice of Law, he offered himself as a candidate for City Council. For a reason which came up that he felt of significant importance, he withdrew his name before the election, but it is indeed probable had he lived, that he would have re-offered and his sterling qualities been recognized by the electorate. The writer knew Edward Arab as independent, aggressive, clear- thinking and a very dear friend. As a lieutenant in the Army, he lost his life leading an attack on the open fields of north Holland, in a section of the bitter fighting that took a heavy toll on Canadian lives. His many friends and family would be grateful that his name be commemorated in this way. Yours very truly, Leonard A. Kitz."
Each year, on the third Monday of February, a different Honouree is featured for Nova Scotia's Heritage Day. Nova Scotia Heritage Day, 2021, honours Lieutenant Edward Francis Arab (1915- 1944)
Year Book 1935 (p. 13)
Sodales Debating Society  The opening and undoubtedly one of the outstanding debates of the year was held in the gymnasium early in October. The occasion was the visit of delegates from the Universities of London and Edinburgh. The outstanding qualities of the speakers, McEwen, D. Ungerson, visitors, and E. Arab, T. Mercer, home team, added to what newspapers termed "a record audience," made the debate a red letter one in the annals of Sodales.
Year Book 1937 (p.70)
Dalhousie Gazette March 15, 1935 (p 4)
Dalhousie Gazette March 15, 1937 (p 1)
From the Dalhousie University Archives:
On October 25, 1944 the following soldiers of the Lincoln and Welland Regiment, killed in action,were initially buried in the town of Huijbergen south west of the church corner and were reburied in Bergen op Zoom Canadian War Cemetery, Netherlands on May 28, 1945. Arab, Edward Francis (Lieutenant; Age 29) Halifax, Nova Scotia Harcourt, William Reginald (Private B21515; Age 24) Toronto, Ontario Marr, Lloyd Walter (Private B143499; Age 26) Port Dover, Ontario McGregor, Leslie David (Private B135137; Age 21) East Linton, Ontario. Moffat, Howard Leroy (Private A107088; Age 24) Ingersoll, Ontario. Witty, Garth Alford (Private C91044; Age 22) Ottawa, Ontario Woods, Aime F. (Private E29132; Age 26) Fauvel, Co., Bonaventure, Quebec
Arthur, Edward, and Anne