John Renwick Matheson

Thank you to Bruce Kettles for providing the service file


Jul 15, 1896

Born in Martintown, Ontario to John and Christy Ann (nee McNaughton) Matheson


Jun 7, 1916

Attested into the Military District #3, Queen’s University Field Ambulance in Kingston, Ontario

Ø      Number 535987

Ø      Next of kin given as Reverend J. Matheson, father, Dalhousie Mills, Ontario

Ø      Previous occupation given as Student

Ø      No previous military experience given

Ø      Religion given as Presbyterian


Oct 8, 1916

Transferred to the 154th Battalion in Cornwall, Ontario.  On being TOS (Taken On Strength) he was appointed to the rank of Lance Corporal


Oct 25, 1916

Embarked the Troopship Mauretania in Halifax, Nova Scotia

On this same date, he was appointed to the rank of Acting Corporal


Oct 31, 1916

Disembarked in Liverpool, England and the battalion proceeded to Bramshott


Jan 31, 1917

The battalion was absorbed into the newly formed 6th Reserve battalion in East Sandling


Aug 29, 1917

In order to proceed to a fighting battalion in France he voluntarily reverted to the rank of Private


Sep 2, 1917

Transferred to the 21st Battalion and arrived at the No. 2 CIBD (Canadian Infantry Base Depot) in Etaples, France as part of a draft of 83 reinforcements from England.  On arrival he was TOS the 21st Battalion


Sep 14, 1917

Left the No. 2 CIBD to join the CC Rein C (Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp)


Sep 16, 1917

Arrived at the CC Rein C in Villers Au Bois


Sep 20, 1917

Attached to the 2nd Entrenching Battalion in Hersin for duty and appointed to the rank of Acting Corporal with pay


Oct 1, 1917

Joined the 21st Battalion in billets in Villers Au Bois and assigned to “A” Company


Nov 3, 1917

During the 21st Battalion’s action at Passchendaele, he was reported missing overnight of November 3-4.


Nov 5, 1917

Private Matheson was found wounded on the battlefield and admitted to the No. 3 Australian CCS (Casualty Clearing Station) with shrapnel wounds to his left leg


Nov 7, 1917

Transferred via the No. 14 AT (Ambulance Train) and admitted to the No. 9 Lakeside USA, General Hospital in Rouen


Nov 9, 1917

Transferred to the No. 2 Convalescent Depot, Rouen, for rehabilitation


Nov 15, 1917

Transferred to the No. 11 Convalescent Depot, Buchy, to continue his recuperation


Nov 29, 1917

Discharged to the base depot from the No. 11 Convalescent Depot


Dec 1, 1917

Joined the No. 2 CIBD in Etaples


Dec 10, 1917

Left the CIBD and joined the CC Rein C in Villers Au Bois


Dec 14, 1917

Rejoined the 21st Battalion in the front lines in the Acheville Section of France


Jan 31, 1918

He was sent to the CC Rein C in Villers Au Bois to receive dental treatment, and returned to the battalion the same day


Apr 16, 1918

During an artillery barrage on the high ground at Mercatel, Private Matheson was killed in action, and buried the following day in the Bellacourt Cemetery

Following the war the 1914-15 Star, British War Medal and Victory Medals were sent to his brother, Reverand A.D. Matheson, 2460 Rosemount Boulevard, Montreal, Quebec.

The Plaque (Dead Man’s Penny), Scroll and Memorial Cross were sent to his mother, Mrs. J. Matheson, Box 1114, Cornwall, Ontario


From the 21st Battalion War Diary


Private Matheson is commemorated on the Lancaster, Onttario War Memorial along with his brother, Homer Lindsay Matheson

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