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eMedals-Canada. A Military Cross Group to Lieutenant McDonald for Leadership & Gallantry at Cambrai

Item: C4324

Canada. A Military Cross Group to Lieutenant McDonald for Leadership & Gallantry at Cambrai

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Canada. A Military Cross Group to Lieutenant McDonald for Leadership & Gallantry at Cambrai

217th Infantry Battalion, 5th Infantry Battalion: Military Cross, George V; British War Medal; and Victory Medal (LIEUT. F.I. MC DONALD.). Naming is officially impressed, the MC and BWM are un-named. Un-mounted, the MC on its lightly soiled original ribbon with pinback hanger, in its hardshelled case of issue, the First World War pair with replacement ribbons, contact marks, very fine. Accompanied by copies of his Index Cards, Attestation Paper, Officers' Declaration Paper, Service Records, Medical Records, Certificate of Service, Last Pay Certificate and London Gazette page with his Military Cross citation. Footnote: Francis Ian McDonald was born on February 2, 1889 in Poplar Grove, Saskatchewan. He was a resident of Poplar Grove when he signed his Attestation Paper (276193) with the 217th Infantry Battalion "Qu'Appelle Battalion", on March 10, 1916 in Whitewood, Saskatchewan, at the age of 27, naming his next-of-kin as his brother, W.P.C. McDonald of Wapella, Saskatchewan, stating that he had no previous military service, that he was not married and that his trade was that of Farmer. McDonald was discharged from the 217th Infantry Battalion, upon accepting a commission, promoted to Lieutenant on November 7, 1916 at Camp Hughes. He was a resident of Langbank, Saskatchewan when he signed his Officers' Declaration Paper as a member of the 217th Infantry Battalion, on November 7, 1917 in Regina, Saskatchewan, naming his next-of-kin as his brother, W.P.C. McDonald of Wapella, Saskatchewan, stating that he belonged to the 16th Light Horse, that his religion was Presbyterian and that his profession was that of Farming. As of January 27, 1917, it was noted that neither of his parents were still alive. The 217th Infantry Battalion was raised in Saskatchewan with mobilization headquarters at Moosomin under the authority of G.O. 69, July 15, 1916. The Battalion sailed from Halifax, Nova Scotia on May 31, 1917 under the authority of Lieutenant-Colonel A.B. Gillis with a strength of 24 officers and 634 other ranks, arriving in Liverpool, England on June 10th. He entered the Segregation Camp at Bramshott and was taken on strength of the 19th Reserve Battalion. He was placed on command to the Officers' Battalion at Seaford on July 28, 1917, then sent to the Canadian Training School at Bexhill on September 17th. Lieutenant McDonald was struck off strength of the 15th Reserve Battalion, on proceeding overseas to the 5th Infantry Battalion the French theatre on November 22, 1917, arriving in France the following day, leaving for his new unit on the 26th and joining them on the 28th. He left for additional training at the Canadian Corps School on February 2, 1918, rejoining the 5th Infantry Battalion on the 25th. Lieutenant Francis Ian McDonald was serving with the 5th Infantry Battalion when he was wounded on September 1, 1918, suffering a slight gun shot (shrapnel) wound to his right thigh. During that battle, east of Hendicourt-Les-Cagnicourt-Dury Road, he had taken charge once the senior officer had been wounded, re-establishing the line and capturing about sixty prisoners and was wounded in the process. While on the way to the dressing station, he reported the situation to battalion headquarters. After the war, he would be rewarded for his efforts that day with the Military Cross. He was admitted to No. 20 General Hospital at Camiers on the 4th, then invalided to England aboard the Hospital Ship Princess Elizabeth on the 5th and admitted to the Hyde Park Section at the 4th Southern General Hospital at Plymouth on the 6th. After four weeks treatment at Plymouth, he was transferred to the Canadian Convalescent Officers' Hospital (CCOH), Matlock Bath on October 3rd. In his Medical Board Report on a Disabled Officer, dated October 11, 1918 at the CCOH, the doctor noted that McDonald had been "Wounded by (a) shrapnel bullet. Entrance just above hip joint and was removed about level of iliac crest and near the centre of same. No injury to important structures. Evacuated to 4th Southern General Hospital, Plymouth. Recovery uneventful." The board doctors continued to state that his condition was "Good. His wound has healed and now presents no disability. Heart and lungs are sound and nutrition is good. Again for for General Service." McDonald was discharged from hospitalization on the 17th, then struck off strength to the 15th Infantry Battalion. Two months later, he was struck off strength on posting to the Saskatchewan Regimental Depot, on proceeding to London for embarkation order for Canada, on December 2, 1918. Lieutenant Francis Ian McDonald, 5th Battalion, Canadian Infantry, Saskatchewan Regiment, was awarded the Military Cross, the citation appearing in the Supplement to the London Gazette 31158 of Friday, January 31, 1919, on Saturday, February 1, 1919, page 1715 and the Canada Gazette of Saturday, May 3, 1919, page 45 Sup.: “For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty east of Hendicourt-Les-Cagnicourt-Dury road on September 1, 1918. Shortly after a successful attack the enemy counter-attacked, forcing back our left flank company and wounding the officer in command of it. He at once took charge, and under a hail of shell and machine-gun fire, rallied the men, re-established the line, and captured about sixty prisoners. He was wounded in the hip by shrapnel, but on the way to the dressing station reported the situation to battalion headquarters. His coolness and confidence restored a critical situation.” Upon arrival in Canada, Lieutenant Francis Ian McDonald was taken on strength at No. 2 District Depot in Toronto, Ontario, where he was struck off strength upon demobilization on March 20, 1919, credited with having served in Canada, England and France, the latter two countries with the 217th Infantry Battalion, the 19th Reserve Battalion, the 5th Infantry Battalion, the 15th Reserve Battalion and at the Saskatchewan Regimental Depot. For his First World War service, he was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.
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