A Military Medal for Action at Vimy Ridge
Military Medal with First Bar, uncrowned George V (348402 BMBR: H.A. BESSANT. 45/BY:CAN: F.A.); British War Medal (unnamed); and Victory Medal (unnamed). Naming is officially impressed on the MM with "Bessent" spelled "Bessant", while the BWM and VM have had the names erased. Better than very fine. Accompanied by copies of his Attestation Paper, Service Records, Pay Records and Discharge Certificate. Footnote: Hubery Arthur Bessent was born on July 17, 1892 in London, England. He was a resident of Toronto, Ontario when he signed his Attestation Paper on November 15, 1915 at Kingston, Ontario, stating that he was married, that he had no previous military service and that his trade was that of Fireman. He embarked Canada aboard the S.S. Metegama on February 5, 1916, arriving in England on the 14th. It was at Witley that he was appointed A/C Bombardier on April 1, 1916, and after spending six months in England, he embarked Southampton for service in the French theatre on July 13, 1916, arriving in Le Havre, France on the 14th. Soon after, he found himself in the field. It was at Vimy Ridge that he would earn his Military Medal. He was cited in the London Gazette 30172 on July 9, 1917, "For gallant and meritorious service. Under heavy fire on the morning of April 9th, this N.C.O. laid a telephone line to an advanced O.P. on the VIMY RIDGE. The route taken was exposed to heavy howitzer and field gun fire, and the line was repeatedly cut. With great persevance and devotion to duty Corporal Bessant patrolled the line repairing all breaks and in spite of heavy fire maintained communication throughout the day and following night. This N.C.O. has been a faithful and untiring linesman. He did specially good work at the SOMME, and received no previous reward." (A.F.W. 3121 12-4-17.). He was later awarded the Bar to the Military Medal, as cited in the London Gazette 31227 on March 13, 1919. Two months after his gallantry at Vimy Ridge, he was promoted to Sergeant on June 17th. He was also appointed Acting Battery Sergeant Major on March 13, 1918. On September 18, 1919, at Buxton, he was reprimanded for being absent without leave from June 6th until he surrendered himself to the Military Police on July 12th, forfeiting twenty-seven days pay. Bessent was struck off strength, returning to Canada aboard the S.S. Belgic out of Liverpool on October 4, 1919. He was discharged from active service upon demobilization on October 14, 1919, at No. 2 District Depot in Toronto.