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  • A Canadian Military Medal for Lewis Gun Action at Fresnoy 1917
  • A Canadian Military Medal for Lewis Gun Action at Fresnoy 1917
  • A Canadian Military Medal for Lewis Gun Action at Fresnoy 1917
  • A Canadian Military Medal for Lewis Gun Action at Fresnoy 1917

Item: C4142

A Canadian Military Medal for Lewis Gun Action at Fresnoy 1917


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A Canadian Military Medal for Lewis Gun Action at Fresnoy 1917

George V (138170 L. Cpl K.L. SHERMAN. 3/CAN: INF:). Naming is officially impressed. Light contact, extremely fine. Accompanied by copies of his Index Cards, Attestation Paper, Service Records, Medical Records and Military Medal Citation. Footnote: Kenneth Lloyd Sherman was born in New Dublin, Ontario, north of Brockville, on October 25, 1897. He signed his Attestation Paper with the 75th Infantry Battalion in Toronto, Ontario, on January 8, 1916, naming his next-of-kin as his father, Anson Sherman of Toronto, stating that he had no previous military service, that he was not married and that his trade was that of Farmer. The Battalion was raised in Southern Ontario with mobilization headquarters at Toronto under the authority of G.O. 103A, August 15, 1915. The Battalion sailed from Halifax, Nova Scotia aboard the S.S. Empress of Britain, on March 29, 1916 under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel S.G. Beckett, with a strength of 36 officers and 1,114 other ranks, arriving in Liverpool, England on April 9th. Ten weeks later, Sherman was transferred to the 3rd Infantry Battalion "Toronto Regiment" on June 18th, arriving in the French theatre at the Canadian Base Depot the following day and joining his unit in the field on the 21st. After their successes in the spring campaigns of 1917, including the taking of Vimy Ridge, the Canadians and British pushed eastwards across open country until they reached German defence lines that ran north to south from Arleux, on to Oppy and then down to Gavrelle. Following a successful push by the Canadians through Arelux in late April, German positions in and around Fresnoy became the scene of fierce fighting on April 28, 1917. By May 5th, the Canadians managed to capture the village. It was lost, however, when ferocious German counter attacks were launched on May 7th and pushed the Canadians and British back. The frontline then stabilized just outside the village. Sherman was a participant in the Battle of Fresnoy, in late April and early May 1917 and was awarded a Military Medal at the age of 19, as published in the London Gazette 30188, page 7291, on July 18, 1917. His citation reads as follows: "This N.C.O. is recommended for remarkable bravery and coolness during and after the attack on Fresnoy, May 3rd, 1917. He was in charge of a Lewis Gun and engaged several advancing lines of the enemy very successfully causing them many casualties and compelling them to retreat. Again, later in the day, when he had run out of ammunition he, at great personal risk, crawled out, both in front and behind our lines, and collected S.A.A. from dead bodies, this being done under a heavy and direct machine gun and rifle fire. This ammunition was instrumental, in the afternoon of May 3rd, in repulsing an enemy counter-attack." (A.F.W. 3121 21-5-17). Ten weeks after his heroics at Fresnoy, Sherman's luck changed, as he was admitted to No. 8 Canadian Field Ambulance with a gunshot (shrapnel) wound to his left buttock, fracturing the crest of his ilium (pelvis) on July 12, 1917. He was admitted the following day to No. 22 General Hospital at Camiers, where his condition was stabilized before he was invalided to England and posted to the 1st Central Ontario Regimental Depot at Shorncliffe on August 9th. His hospitalization over the next five months took him to various facilities in England, including: the Suffolk Hospital, Ampton, Bury St. Edmund's, the General Military Hospital at Colchester and the Royal Convalescent Hospital at Sudley, before he was transferred to the Military Convalescent Hospital at Epsom on October 30th, where he continued his convalescence, before being discharged on January 4, 1918, his war service in Europe finished. He was placed on command to the Canadian Discharge Depot at Buxton on January 21st and struck off strength of the Overseas Military Forces of Canada on the 31st, embarking from Liverpool. Upon arrival in Canada, he was posted to Military District No. 2 in Toronto on February 9th, then taken on strength of No. 2 Casualty Unit in Toronto on February 17th, where he soon found himself at Ravina Barracks for further treatment. In his Medical History of an Invalid, dated March 9, 1918 at Ravina Barracks, the weakness and pain in his left leg and hip was noted: "Weakness of leg. If he walks one mile leg (he) is fatigued and starts to ache, and he then has to rest for 2 or 3 hours. In wet weather (the) leg aches. He is unable to stand on Parade longer that 15 mins." The attending physician estimated his percentage of capacity to earn a living between twenty-five and twenty percent during the next nine months time. He was discharged from service on March 23, 1918.
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