Casualty Reports From 2nd Ypres begin to appear

Friday, April 30, 1915

THIS DAY IN RMR HISTORY: “On the night of April 29/30 the Battalion was moved to the East side of the Yser Canal to a position in C20C. The frontage allotted not being found sufficient for the whole Bn., one coy dug themselves in connecting the line between the 16th Can. Bn. & the King’s Own Scottish Borderers of the 13th Bde.

The remainder of the Bn. were withdrawn to the canal bank, east side, between positions 2 & 3 where they remained during the day of April 30th. After dusk that day they were moved back to the trenches in C19D & C20C, the frontage meantime having been rearranged to make room for the whole Bn. Here the Bn. remained for Saturday, Sunday & Monday, May 1st, 2nd & 3rd under shell fire.” [1]

Again from the Battalion history: “April 30th was a warm day and the men of Nos. 2, 3 and 4 Companies enjoyed the novel experience of swimming in the Canal under shell fire from enemy guns. At night a rearrangement of dispositions having been effected, the companies moved forward to join No. 1 Coy. in the trenches facing the Pilkem-St. Julien Ridge. Fairly heavy shelling and scattered rifle fire were encountered during the move, Lieut.-Col. W.W. Burland receiving a severe shrapnel bruise and Lieut. S. Grant a bullet through the arm.” [2]

30 April 15“Ottawa, April 30. – There are thirty-five officers to each battalion and the casualties to date in the various battalions are as follows. 16th Battalion, 24 officers; 10th Battalion, 23 officers; 3rd Battalion, 21 officers; 5th Battalion, 19 officers; 7th Battalion, 18 officers; 8th Battalion, 17 officers; 15th Battalion, 17 officers; 2nd Battalion, 17 officers; 14th Battalion, 11 officers; 1st Battalion, 9 officers; 9th Battalion, 8 officers; 13th Battalion, 7 officers.

The 10th Battalion has lost a total of 9 officers killed, the 7th has 6 killed, the 16th and 13th have 4 officers killed, the 14th has 3 killed, and the 2nd has 5 killed, the 3rd has 4 killed, the 4th has 4 killed, the 5th and 8th each have one killed, the 1st and 15th have none reported killed as yet.”  [3]

[1]      Operation-Report of May 6th, 1915, War Diary, 14th Canadian Battalion, The Royal Montreal Regiment.  Library and Archives Canada, Ottawa,
[2]    R.C. Featherstonhaugh, The Royal Montreal Regiment 14th Battalion C.E.F. 1914-1925, Montreal, The Gazette Printing Co., Ltd., 1927, pg. 46.
[3]    “Number of Officers in Casualty Lists,” The Montreal Daily Mail, Montreal, Quebec, Saturday, May 1, 1915, page 1, col. 4.

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