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eMedals-A South Africa & First War Memorial Group to Capt. Gape

Item: C2920

A South Africa & First War Memorial Group to Capt. Gape



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A South Africa & First War Memorial Group to Capt. Gape

A South Africa & First War Memorial Group to Capt. Gape; Queen's South Africa Medal, 5 Clasps - CAPE COLONY, ORANGE FREE STATE, TRANSVAAL, SOUTH AFRICA 1901, SOUTH AFRICA 1902 (20366 SERJT: H. GAPE. 106th Coy IMP: YEO:); British War Medal (CAPT. H.F.B. GAPE.); Victory Medal (CAPT. H.F.B. GAPE.); and Memorial Cross, George VI (CAPT. H.F.B. GAPE). Naming is officially impressed on the three medals and officially engraved on the MC. Un-mounted, original ribbons on the medals, gilt wear on the VM, the MC in its case of issue, light contact, near extremely fine. Accompanied by copies of his Index Cards, Officers' Declaration Paper, Service Records, Medical Records, Certificate of Service and Commission Document (naming him a Captain while with the 107th Infantry Battalion, CEF).   Footnote: Henry Francis Bruce Gape was born on April 15, 1872 in St. Albans, Hertfordshire, England. He served for eighteen months as a Sergeant with the 106th Company, Imperial Yeomanry in the Boer War in South Africa and came through the war unscathed. For his Boer War service he was awarded the Queen's South Africa Medal with five Clasps. He later immigrated to Canada and joined the local militia near Winnipeg, the 105th Regiment (possibly the 106th Regiment, Winnipeg Light Infantry). Gape was a resident of Winnipeg, Manitoba when he signed his Officers' Declaration Paper as a Lieutenant with the 107th Infantry Battalion "Winnipeg Battalion", on May 1, 1916 in Winnipeg, at the age of 44, naming his next-of-kin as his wife, Selia Mary Gape, stating that he had previous service with an Active Militia, the 105th Regiment, that he served in the South African War for eighteen months and that his occupation was that of Master Mariner. The Gapes had three children: two sons, James Nugent Gape and Kenneth Henry Surtees Gape, along with one daughter, Kathleen Rosalee Mary Gape. The Battalion was raised and mobilized in Winnipeg, Manitoba under the authority of G.O. 151, December 22, 1915. The day before the Battalion left for overseas service, September 18, 1916, Gape was appointed Captain (as confirmed in his Commission Document). The Battalion sailed September 19, 1916 from Halifax, Nova Scotia aboard the S.S. Olympic, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel G. Campbell with a strength of 32 officers and 965 other ranks, arriving in Liverpool, England on the 25th. In England, the Battalion trained at Witley Camp, where it was re-designated the 107th Pioneer Battalion and was to serve in France in that capacity. Gape went with the 107th to France, arriving on February 25, 1917 in Boulogne. Seven weeks later, he was admitted to Field Ambulance on April 14, 1917, then transferred to No. 42 Casualty Clearing Station, followed by his admission to No. 3 General Hospital at Le Treport "Sick (Slight)" the next day. It was here that he was diagnosed with "Myalgia" (muscle pain, a symptom of many diseases and disorders). It was determined after nine days that he be invalided to England on the 24th, aboard the Hospital Ship St. Andrew. He was posted to the Manitoba Regimental Depot at Shorncliffe and admitted to 4th London General Hospital on the 25th. After one week, he was discharged from hospital on May 2nd, but it would prove to be one of many visits to hospital during his time in the military. Gape was posted to the 11th Reserve Battalion on May 24, 1917 and after having been declared fit enough to return to service, he left for the French theatre, arriving at the Canadian Base Depot in France on June 22nd. He rejoined his unit shortly thereafter but his tenure with the 107th didn't last long, as he was admitted to Liverpool Merchants Hospital at Etaples three days after arriving, on June 25th, with the diagnosis of Myalgia once again. After seventeen days hospitalization, he was discharged on July 12, 1917 and returned to the 107th in the field. Gape is acknowledged as having been "wounded" on July 23, 1917, reporting wounded and remaining at duty on the 24th, however, the records do not state the nature of the injury. A month later, his foot problems came to the fore again, along with weakness and pain in his back, with Gape stating that he also had insomnia. He was admitted to No. 20 General Hospital at Camiers on August 22nd and after a brief assessment, was invalided to England aboard HM Hospital Ship Princess Elizabeth. He was posted to the Manitoba Regimental Depot and admitted to the Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire Canadian Red Cross Hospital No. 1, Hyde Park Place in London on August 23rd. He was hospitalized for three weeks, before being discharged on September 12th. The decision was made by medical authorities while Gape was in hospital, to invalid him to Canada upon discharge from hospital. He sailed from Liverpool aboard the Hospital Ship Llandovery Castle on September 19, 1917. A series of tests were done on Gape while he was in hospital at Military District No. 10 in Winnipeg. In a letter from Lieutenant Colonel W.H. Reilly, Assistant Director of Medical Services, Canadian Army Medical Corps, it was noted that his patient suffered from "Chronic Interstitial Nephritis with a degree of Degenerated Myocardium and Arterio Sclerosis affecting particularly the arch of the aorta. The trouble he has in his feet, I think there is little doubt (it) is gout, although so far no deposits have occurred in the neighbourhood of the joint. There is a definite chronic gastritis present which evidently rests on gall bladder disease as a basis." Reilly also noted that the "officer in question (Gape) is considerably over age" and suggested that a full recovery was doubtful. In his Medical History of an Invalid, dated June 15, 1918 at Winnipeg, another doctor described Gape's medical condition: "After walking five miles there is pain in (his) left metatarsals". The attending Medical Board recommended that he be declared Category C (for Home Service in Canada only). Gape was struck off strength on January 19, 1918 by reason of being "Medically Unfit", credited with having served in Canada, England and France. For his First War Service, he was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. Gape died from Mesentric Venous Thrombosis (a blood clot in one or more veins that drain blood from the intestine, blocking blood flow; there are two such mesentric veins through which blood leaves the intestine; the condition stops the blood circulation of the intestine and often results in damage to the intestine), on June 27, 1946, at the age of 74, his death attributed to his military service. He is buried in Elwood Cemetery, Mount Elliott, Detroit, Michigan, Grave Reference: Plot 203, Section N. His wife, Mary Gape of Grosse Ile, Michigan was the only one to receive his Memorial Cross, as his mother had predeceased him.
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