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Remembering World War I Yarmouth Connections
Adelbert Hersey Force: Army Regiment: Canadian Infantry Battalion: 25th Battalion Company: “B” Company; 7th Platoon, 11th Section Regimental Number: 67296 Rank: Private Date of Birth: October 4, 1895 Place of Birth: Yarmouth, Yarmouth County, Nova Scotia Date of Enlistment: November 15, 1914 Place of Enlistment: Halifax, Nova Scotia Age at Enlistment: 19 Height: 5 Feet 4 1/2 Inches Prior Military Experience: 7 months RCR Trade: Labourer Marital Status: Single Religion: Wesleyan Next of Kin: (Father) William E Hersey, Yarmouth, Nova Scotia Adelbert was the fourth oldest of the six sons of William E. Hersey who served in the First World War. Adelbert was the first of the Yarmouth casualties of the 25th Battalion. “Four German mines were exploded under their position at Mount Kemmel, Belgium, October 8. Thirty men were wounded or killed. For the moment the troops, for the first timke under fire, fell back to escape the hail of death. They then rallied and with fixed bayonets went at the oncoming Germans. They drove them back and with a rush recaptured the ground yielded in their first confusion. They won back their trenches and held them, inflicting severe losses on the enemy and exacting quick revenge for the loss of their comrades.” Date of Death: October 15, 1915 Age at Death: 20 Cemetery: Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension, France Plot: I. B. 179. Bailleul is a large town in France, near the Belgian border. In the centre of the town is a stone obelisk erected by the 25th Division as their Memorial on the Western front, recalling particularly the beginning of their war service at Bailleul and their part in the Battle of Messines. Bailleul Communal Cemetery Extension contains 4,403 Commonwealth burials of the First World War; 11 of the graves made in April 1918 were destroyed by shell fire and are represented by special memorials. Commemorated on Page 19 of the First World War Book of Remembrance Displayed in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower in Ottawa on January 22 Listed on the Nominal Roll of the 25th Battalion Listed on the Memorial Tablet - Wesleyan Church, Yarmouth N.S. Commemorated on the Yarmouth Monument Sources: Library and Archives Canada (Attestation Paper) Commonwealth War Grave Commission Commonwealth War Grave Commission (Cemetery Information) Canadian Great War Project Veterans Affairs Canada Additional Information: “A Monument Speaks” A Thurston; 1989 (pp 209-212)
Private Adelbert Hersey
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Attestation Paper (click to enlarge)
3rd Canadian Field Hospital B E F France 15th October, 1915 Dear Mrs. Hersey: ... There seemed some hope when I wrote you that he would rally.  But the nervous shock and loss of blood caused collapse and he passed away between 4 and 5 o’clock this morning.  He had the very best care possible, good physicians, good nurses, everything but your own presence that he could have had at home. ...  John Pringle Captain  No 3 Casualty Clearning Station B E F  15 October 1915 Dear Mrs. Hersey  I regret very much to have to tell you that your son died this morning at 2:45. His end was very peaceful and he passed away in his sleep. He was gradually getting weaker each day and was wandering a little in his mind so that he did not quite know where he was, but was quite content. I send you my heartfelt sympathy in your very great bereavement.  Your son will be buried in a little cemetery here where so many of our soldiers lie.  Very sincerely yours K. Stewart, Sister “We worked as swiftly and as carefully as we could. We knew that he was badly wounded for the earth was soaked with blood. But when we saw, we turned away sick with horror.  Fortunately, he lost consciousness while we were trying to disentangle him from the fallen timbers and he died, we heard, one week later in hospital”