Richard Thomson

Oct 8, 1875

Born in Edinburgh, Scotland to John Reginald and Helen Louden (nee Young) Thomson


Aug 9, 1915

Attested into the 83rd Battalion CEF in Toronto, Ontario

 Ø  Number 171224

Ø  Next of kin given as Hannah Thomson, wife, 89 Peterborough Ave., Toronto, Ontario

Ø  Previous occupation given as Scaleman

Ø  No previous military experience given

Ø  Religion given as Presbyterian

Ø  Assigned to the battalion’s 1st Regimental Draft


On attesting he stated he had been born in 1879

Initial training was carried out at the Niagara Camp, Niagara-on-the-Lake from August 1915 to April 25, 1916 when the battalion moved to the Riverdale Barracks in Toronto


Sep 25, 1915

The 1st Regimental Draft embarked the SS Corsican in Montreal, Quebec


Oct 6, 1915

Disembarked in Plymouth, England and proceeded to Shorncliffe where the draft was absorbed into the 39th Reserve Battalion to continue training


Feb 3, 1916

Transferred to the 21st Battalion


Feb 5, 1916

Arrived at the CBD (Canadian Base Depot) in the Rouelles Camp, Havre, France and TOS (Taken On Strength) the 21st Battalion.


Feb 17, 1916

After leaving the base depot, Private Richard Thomson joined the 21st Battalion in the Ypres Salient N & O trenches near Voormezeele, Belgium and was assigned to the “C” Company Bombing Section


Jan 12, 1917

Admitted to the No. 4 CFA (Canadian Field Ambulance) with a diagnosis that reads PUO (Pyrexia of Unknown Origin), (a fever without a known cause)


Jan 16, 1917

Transferred to the No. 6 CCS (Casualty Clearing Station) for further treatment


Jan 21, 1917

Transferred to the No. 4 Stationary Hospital in Arques, France for additional treatment


Jan 24, 1917

Discharged from hospital to duty with the 21st Battalion


Mar 15, 1917

Appointed to the rank of Lance Corporal to replace 59420 L/Cpl Hanrahan who had been promoted


May 20, 1917

While the battalion was resting in Aux Rietz, France, Lance Corporal Thomson received and wound and was evacuated to the No. 6 Casualty Clearing Station where he died of his wounds.  It is unclear from the file how he was wounded, however the battalion’s war diary makes note that men were sent out on work parties and he may have been wounded during one of these details.  There is also a note that an unnamed soldier was wounded by the accidental explosion of a trench bomb.


 Richard Thomas was buried in the Barlin Communal Cemetery, Barlin, France

 Following the war, the British War Medal, Victory Medal, Plaque (Dead Man’s Penny), Scroll and Memorial Cross were sent to his widow, Mrs. Hannah Thomson, 89 Peterborough Ave., Toronto, Ontario




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