Smith, Henry Ernest: Service no. 880553

Digitized Service Record

Source: Gathering Our Heroes

Find-A-Grave: Believed to be buried in the London, Ontario area.

Medals here per Jim Sommerdyk from the 18th Battalion Facebook Group.

Private Henry Ernest Smith, reg. no. 880533. Source: Gathering Our Heroes

These medals sold at for $475.00 USD. Posted by Quentin de Givenchy at 18th Battalion Facebook Group.

“Father, Walter Smith: Afghanistan Medal, 1878-1880 (402. PTE W. SMITH. 1/5TH FUSRS). Naming is officially engraved. Dark patina, original frayed ribbon, edge nicks, extremely fine. Accompanied by copies of his Pay/Service Records. Son, Henry E. Smith: British War Medal (880553 A. SJT. H.E. SMITH. 18-CAN. INF.); Victory Medal (880553 A. SJT. H.E. SMITH. 18-CAN. INF.); and Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal (C.S.M. (W.O. CL.II.) H.E. SMITH CAN. FUS.). Naming is officially impressed on all three. Mounted to a suspension with swing bar pinback, as worn by the veteran, original aged ribbons, dark patinas, extremely fine. Accompanied by a Ribbon Bar for the BWM and VM with pinback, along with copies of his Attestation Paper, Service Records, Medical Records and Discharge Certificate.

Footnote: Walter Smith enlisted with the 2/5th Regiment of Foot on September 25, 1875 at the age of 16 years and 11 months. He was with the 1st Battalion of the British forces in Peshawar in 1880, transferring to the 2nd Battalion, Northumberalnd Fusiliers and earning him the Afghanistan Medal without clasp. Smith was with the 1st Battalion, 5th Regiment of Foot in Mullingar, Ireland in the Spring of 1882 and was discharged from service by purchase on May 22nd. He later married Louisa Clara Smith and emigrated to Canada, with his son, Henry, settling in Byron, near London, Ontario. His son, Henry Ernest Smith was born in London, England on November 25, 1884. He signed his Attestation Paper with the 186th Infantry Battalion, “Kent Battalion”, on March 17, 1916, in Chatham, Ontario, at the age of 31, naming his next-of-kin as his wife, Jennie Smith of London, Ontario, that he was an NCO (Sergeant with the 24th Regiment), that he had previous military service with both the 24th and 7th Regiments, that he was Married and that his trade was that of Farmer. As of 1916, the couple had two daughters, Reta May (age 8) and Emily Edith (age 5). The Battalion sailed March 28, 1917 from Halifax, Nova Scotia, under the command of Major N. Smith with a strength of 18 officers and 469 other ranks, arriving aboard the S.S. Lapland in Liverpool, England on April 7th. Upon arrival in England, the Battalion was absorbed into the 4th Canadian Reserve Battalion, with Smith reverting to Private on June 5, 1917 at his own request. The 4th was taken on strength by the 18th Canadian Battalion in the French theatre in the field on June 13, 1917. Smith was at the 3rd Army Rest Camp on May 26, 1918, later rejoining the 18th in the field on June 12, 1918. On October 12th, he was transferred from the 18th Infantry Battalion to the Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp, as a Batman to Captain C.J. Jackson, Instructor. By January 29, 1919, he was again taken on strength of the 4th Reserve Battalion. He was struck off strength of the 4th Reserve Battalion on transfer to the Canadian Concentration Camp at Kinmel Park on February 12, 1919, for return to Canada. Smith was taken on strength at No.1 District Depot in London, Ontario on February 20th, discharged from service upon demobilization on March 22, 1919, credited with having served in Canada, the United Kingdom and France, and entitled to wear the War Service Badge, Class A, number 83206. He died on March 12, 1960, at the age of 75.”


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