The O'Leary Collection—Medals of The Royal Canadian Regiment

Captain Everest Baldwin Gandier

7th Regiment, Fusiliers
33rd Overseas Battalion
19th Canadian Infantry Battalion

By: Capt (ret'd) Michael M. O'Leary, CD, The RCR

Lieutenant E. B. Gandier Lieutenant E. B. Gandier
IWM (HU 114860)

Everest Baldwin Gandier was born on 7 Dec 1887 in Drumbo, Oxford County, Ontario. Gandier's family, led by parents Jabez and Mary, can be found in the 1891 Canadian Censuses. English-born Jabez Gandier was a minister in the Church of England. Jabez (41) and Mary (38) are shown in the 1891 Census with six children; Charlotte (12), Millard (10), Annie (8), Stace (5), Ernest (4), and Arthur (1). (Three siblings were previously deceased in childhood and two more children were yet to be born.)

By the time he was 17 years old, Gandier was a soldier of the Canadian Militia, appearing on the pay list for No. 7 Company of the 7th Regiment, Fusiliers, in London, Ont., for the drill year 1904/05. Listed at the rank of Corporal, he received Drill Pay in the amount of $7.20, equivalent to 12 days drill at 60 cents per day, for parading with the unit between 25 Sep 1904 and 15 Jun 1905. Gandier also received $2.40 Efficiency Pay. While country regiments of the Militia spent their twelve days at annual Brigade Camps, city regiments could drill at local armouries through the year to meet the training requirement in lieu of attending camp.

Militia General Order No. 91 of 1904 defines the issue of Efficiency Pay to soldiers of the Militia. The Order notes that soldiers who had performed the ordered number of days of drill shall receive Efficiency Pay at a rate depending on their number of years of eligible service. This was paid at a daily rate of 20 cents per day for the first year, 40 cents per day for the second year, and 50 cents per day for the third and following years.

Corporal Gandier again appears on the pay list for Drill Pay for the period from 2 Oct 1906 to 30 Jun 1906. He was paid $7.20 plus $4.80 Efficiency Pay. The following year, for the period from 1 Oct 1906 to 24 May 1907, he is shown at the rank of Sergeant and received $7.20 (suggesting that his promotion came after having earned his Drill Pay at the Corporal's rate) plus $6.00 Efficiency Pay. In the latter paysheet, Gandier's entry was also annotated with "Absent at Muster" with a resulting deduction of $1.10.

On Monday, 25 Jul 1910, The Advertiser of London reported on the annual picnic of the commercial travelers held at Port Stanley. In total, 6000 people attended the picnic, including 200 travelers from London who went to their train that morning led by the 7th Regiment's Band. Gandier's name appears in the article along with the names of the other travelers that made up the winning Pushball team.

In January 1915, the Canada Gazette published Gandier's appointment to a Provisional Lieutenancy in the 7th Regiment, Fusiliers. The effective date of his appointment was 1 Dec 1914. Gandier's name appears under the list of officers for the 7th Regiment beginning with the January 1915 issue of the The Quarterly Militia List of the Dominion of Canada. His name is a shown in italics, denoting his supernumerary status (i.e., not yet in an establishment position) and marked with an asterisk (for his provisional appointment as as untrained officer).

On 5 Jan 1915, Gandier was examined at the Royal School in London, Ont., and successfully passed the examination to qualify for the rank of Lieutenant. Along with others who had similarly qualified, Gandier's name appeared in The London Advertiser on 3 Mar 1915.

The 33rd Overseas Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (C.E.F.) was authorized on 7 Nov 1914 as an infantry battalion recruited and mobilized in London, Ontario. As the battalion was starting to organize and recruit, Gandier was adjusting to his new role as a commissioned officer with a plan to go overseas himself. His records show an initial enlistment date for the C.E.F. (on one medical examination form) of 27 May 1915. On 13 Jun 1915, he officially transferred from the 7th Fusiliers to the 33rd Overseas Battalion.

As he transitioned to C.E.F. status, Gandier, like all officers of the Militia, remained on the official list of officers of his parent regiment. The London Advertiser of 8 Sep 1915, in a column titled "Military Orders for 1st Division" (i.e., 1st Div. of the Militia in Military District No. 1), identified his change of status in the Regiment. No longer supernumerary, he and Lieutenants Burwell and Pope were absorbed into the establishment. In subsequent quarterly Militia Lists, Gandier's name lost the asterisk with the confirmation of his qualification, lost the italics once on the establishment and, in January 1916 gained the notation "(m)" for having completed a short course in musketry. By the April 1916 edition, his name would be italicized once again with an accompanying "(E)", this time to denote his having been seconded to the C.E.F.

Gandier completed an Officer's Declaration Form for service in the C.E.F. with the 33rd Overseas Battalion on 22 Oct 1915. A 29-year-old commercial traveler, he was described on his medical history form as 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing 150 pounds, with a 38-inch chest and good physical development. Gandier recorded his next-of-kin as his mother, Mrs. J. Gandier, Pelee Island, Essex Co., Ont. His religious denomination was Church of England.

With the 33rd Battalion, Gandier sailed from Halifax aboard the S.S. Lapland on 1 Apr 1916. Soon after arriving in England, the battalion was redesignated the 33rd Reserve Battalion and provided reinforcements to units in France until early July 1916 when its remaining personnel were absorbed by the 36th Battalion.

Shortly after arriving in England, Gandier was sent to Hythe to attend a training course between 4 Apr to 6 May 1916. This course qualified him as a 1st Class Instructor in Musketry and the Lewis Machine Gun.

On 5 Jul 1916, Gandier was taken on the strength of the 36th Battalion which functioned as a depot unit and provided reinforcements to the Canadian Corps in the field until early 1917. Gandier spent seven weeks with the 36th Bn. before proceeding overseas to France on 28 Aug 1916 to join the 19th Canadian Infantry Battalion. The 19th Cdn. Inf Bn. Was a unit of the 4th Canadian Infantry Brigade in the 2nd Canadian Division.

A few days before Gandier joined the unit, the 19th Cdn. Inf Bn. Came out of the front line on 23 Aug 1916. After a series of marches over the following days, the battalion entered a training area and billets at Nordausques on 28 Aug 1916. Here the unit started with three days of training in communication drills, musketry, bombing, lectures, section and platoon drill, and machine gun classes. Clothing and equipment inspections were conducted and the unit was brought up to establishment strength for Lewis Guns and hand carts.

The first three days of September, 1916 saw a change in the 19th Bn's training syllabus. The new range of subjects included musketry, bombing, trench attack, section, platoon, and company drill, and lectures. On 4 Sep 1916, the battalion marched out of Nordausques with a strength of 30 officers, 946 other ranks, 56 horses, and 8 mules. In a series of marches the unit reached Albert on 9 Sep 1916 and bivouacked in the Brickfields west of the town.

While at Brickfields, the 19th Battalion was issued new distinguishing marks for their uniforms. To be worn on each sleeve at the shoulder, the 19th Bn's new flashes consisted of a divisional flash, for the 2nd Division this was a dark blue rectangle, two inches by three inches, which was topped by a battalion identifier, a green semi-circle two inches across at the base. The first brigade in each division wore green battalion identifiers, which were, in sequence: circles, semi-circles, triangles, and squares (these shapes, with 1, 2, 3, and 4 sides, marked the first, second, third, and fourth battalions in their respective brigades).

On Sunday, 10 Sep 1916, the 19th Bn. attended Divine Service in the morning and then prepared to move into the front lines. That night the 4th Infantry Brigade relieved the 1st Brigade. The 19th Bn. went directly to the front line trenches, the 21st Bn. was in support trenches, and the 20th and 18th Bns. were in Brigade Reserve. The initial company dispositions of the 19th Battalion were "A" Co. right, "B" Co. left, "C" Co. in support and "D" Co. in reserve. Every man in the battalion carried into the forward trenches two Mills bombs, two sandbags, and two extra bandoliers of ammunition. Each of the two forward company had four Lewis Guns with 3000 rounds while one Vickers and four Colt machine guns were held at Battalion Headquarters.

Over the next few days, the soldiers of the 19th Battalion were on the receiving end of the German contributions to ongoing artillery duels. By night they resisted determined rushes by German raiding parties. The casualties, dead and wounded, began to add up. This intense and costly tour of the front line would come to a climax on 15 Sep 1915. The battalion's War Diary entry for that date begins:

"In conjunction with our Fourth and the French Armies, the Canadian Corps attacked the German position. The 4th Canadian Infantry Brigade took part in the attacks in conjunction with the 6th Canadian Infantry Bde. on our left and the 15th Division on our right."

The Brigade's attack was on a three-battalion front with the 18th, 20th, and 21st Battalion in line from right to left, supported by two detachments from Heavy Section Machine Gun Corps (i.e., a total of six tanks). The 19th Battalion was close behind in Support. The 24th Bn (from the 5th Bde.) was attached in Reserve. When the three leading battalions attacked in line, nine platoons of the 19th Battalion followed close behind to mop up and to consolidate the captured German trench. The battalion's other three platoons formed a subsequent wave of moppers-up on the left side of the brigade's assault.

As the units of the 4th Brigade readied for jumping off at Zero hour, 6:24 a.m., German artillery indicating the enemy's own intentions to attack fell on the trenches. With a German attack attempting to develop on the left, the 4th Brigade headed for its own objectives and a hard day of fighting to capture and consolidate in the German forward trench lines.

In less than an hour, reports were being received of the first German trenches being overtaken by the leading assault troops and occupied by the moppers-up of the 19th Battalion. By 8.40 a.m., all elements of the 19th Bn. were in their assigned objective areas. Consolidation work continued throughout the day under heavy enemy artillery fire. Late in the afternoon, around 5 p.m., the 5th Cdn. Inf. Bde. passed through to continue the attack toward Courcelette.

The 19th Bn. was withdrawn from the front lines on 16 Sep 1916. the War Diary's entry for that day summarized the cost from the information available:

"Casualties on 15th:—Capt. W.H. McLaren missing believed killed, Lieut. A.W. MacDonald killed in action, Lieut. M.F. Wilkes killed in action, Lieut. W.R. McGie wounded, Lieut. E.B. Gandier wounded, Capt C.S. Patterson wounded (in Albert). Other ranks (estimated 250)."

Three day's later the full costs of the 19th Battalion's front line tour was recorded:

"Total casualties from Sept. 10th to 17th: Officers — 2 killed, 12 wounded, 1 missing believed killed, Total 15. Other ranks — Killed 58, wounded 220, missing 35, sick 27. Total 340."

From arriving at the 19th Battalion on 28 August until being wounded in action on 15 Sep 1916, Everest Gandier's service in a fighting battalion lasted 19 days. This included a single tour of the front line trenches and one attack.

On 16 Sep 1916, Gandier, having been evacuated from the battlefield, was admitted to No. 8 General Hospital, Rouen. His most serious wounds were a gun shot wound (G.S.W.) of the right thigh and a severe wound of the right forearm. Although labeled in medical records as "G.S.W.," this term could be applied to wounds cause by bullets, shrapnel balls or shell splinters. Four days later, Gandier was evacuated to England aboard the hospital ship H.S. Panama, and on 20 Sep 1916 was admitted to Lady Carnarvon's Hospital for Officers in London. This 40-bed hospital, located at 40 Bryanston Square, London, was a convalescent hospital affiliated with Queen Alexandra's Military Hospital. Established by the Countess of Carnarvon, it was financed by her godfather and guardian Baron Alfred de Rothschild.

After four months in hospital, Gandier was examined by a Medical Board at 86 Strand, London, Eng., on 19 Jan 1917. His disability was noted as "G.S.W. right forearm (severe), right thigh." The Board found that:

"This officer received High Explosive shrapnel wounds: 1. Right forearm, severe, part of the muscle being carried away, compound fracture radius and part of lower third ulna carried away, later septic. 2. Superficial wound of right thigh about three inches below trochanter. Wound cleaned up at C.C.S. Sent to 8 General, Rouen. Admitted Lady Carnarvon's Hosp 19-9-16. Thigh wound now healed. Right forearm still in splint and wound is not yet entirely healed. Recent X-ray shows non-union of both radius and ulna with about 1 1/2" missing. There is greatly restricted movement of fingers. Subsequent operations will be necessary."

"He is suffering from the effects of a wound described in Army Form A49a of this date. Subsequent operations will be necessary, and it is recommended that he be invalided to Canada for further treatment there (D.D.M.S. 22-4-5, 29 Nov 1916)."

The Board considered that Gandier's injuries were severe and their effects would be permanent. Pending his next examination, Gandier was considered unfit for any nature of service for the next three months. He was sent on leave to Canada from 19 Jan to 19 Apr 1917

On 5 Feb 1917, The Daily Gleaner of Fredericton, N.B., published details received from St. John, N.B. In a brief item titled "212 Returned Men at St. John" and subtitled "Another Steamer Brings Over Large Number of Disabled Soldiers From Front" was the name "Lieut. E.B. Gandier, 19th Battalion."

Returning to England after his period of convalescent leave, Gandier was re-admitted to Lady Carnarvon's Hospital on 30 Apr 1917. While still in hospital, his parent unit changed on 21 May 1917 with a transfer and posting to the 1st Central Ontario Regiment Depot (C.O.R.D.). The C.O.R.D. was part of the new regionally based reinforcement system, with named Depots taking in troops from battalions raised in those areas in Canada and providing reinforcement drafts to similarly designated fighting units. The 19th Cdn. Inf. Bn., having been recruited and mobilized in Toronto, was associated with the C.O.R.D. These Depots units also became the parent unit for any officers or soldiers returned to England from their affiliated battalions in France and Flanders.

Gandier was discharged from hospital on 30 Jun 1917. It would be nearly three more months before he went before another Medical Board in London, Eng., on 15 Sep 1917. The Board reported:

"This officer appears before this Board coming from Lady Carnarvon's Hospital for Officers. He appeared before this Board May 1st 1917 having just returned from three months leave to Canada. The Board sent him to above hospital for further treatment.

"Present Condition. Wounds healed; an ununited fracture of lower end of ulna and a large part of lower end of ulna gone. A further operation will require to be done, but on account of history of wound it will be some months before operation can be done. The Board recommends invaliding to Canada."

The Board assessed that Gandier would not be fit for any service for another year. On 17 Oct 1917, he sailed from Liverpool for Canada aboard the H.S. Araguaya. On arrival in Canada, Gandier went before a Medical Board conducted at Halifax, N.S., on 25 Oct 1917. The Board found that Gandier was:

"Suffering from the effects of GSW right forearm. Wounds healed. Compound fracture both bones, reunited. Wrist fingers somewhat ankylosed.

"Patient has been under the care of Arbuthnot Lane, and has a letter stating that nothing should be done for 6-8 months but that after that period he (A. Lane) is "very anxious to do the required operation," and that "it would be wise to have this operation performed in this hospital (Lady Carnarvon's Hospital for Officers, 48 Bryanston Sq., London W.)"

"It is recommended that he be given 6 (six) months leave under medical supervision, and then be sent back to the above-mentioned hospital for operation."

Gandier was pronounced not fit for service in any form. His disability was expected to last at least one year and it had reduced his ability to earn his livelihood by 75%.

A Medical History of an Invalid form, one of a number of such forms in Gandier's service records, was completed at London, Ont., on 15 Nov 1917. He was described on the form as 5 feet 7 1/2 inches in height, weighing 147 pounds, with a medium complexion, brown hair, and blue eyes. Gandier's intended place of residence after discharge was 395 Waterloo St., London, Ont. His present condition was summarized as:

"This officer is suffering effects of G.S.W. of right arm, both bones of forearm broken and non union present, and and fingers swollen, motion in elbow good. Hand carried pronated slightly. On outer aspect of right thigh scar (shrapnel) four inches by two inches. Scar of compound fracture recently healed but still tender. Arm in splint. Not operable for six or eight months. Heart, lungs and other organs normal."

The Medical Board which assessed his case considered Gandier unfit for a further year and recommended transfer to "F" Unit of the Military Hospitals Commission Command (M.H.C.C.) for treatment.

Another Medical History of an Invalid form was completed on Gandier at London, Ont., on 7 Jan 1918. The description of his present condition included:

"Forearm shortened 2 3/4 inches. Sinus [i.e., an opening into the wound on his arm] a slight discharge still; 25 degrees of movement. Pronation and supination. No loss of sensation. With difficulty can pick up pencil from table with thumb and forefinger. Can't feed himself. Can touch tip of thumb and middle of 2nd phalanx of 1st finger."

The report also included notes from two specialist comments:

"Radiographic Report, Nov 19th, 1917. There has been a severe compound comminuted fracture of both bones of the forearm resulting in the loss of the lower three inches of the Ulna with the exception of the head. There is non-union of the radius and displacement of the lower portion in the pronated position. There are also some pieces of callus and shrapnel in the soft tissues." (Sgd.) Geo. McNeill.

"Jan 5th, 1918. It appears that the arm (right) should be everted to oppose the radius with a bone plate and a bone graft considered for the ulna though the latter in my judgment will not succeed. This operation should not be attempted till five or six months after sinus has healed (About May 1918). The infection appears to have been very severe. Sensation in hand O.K." (Sgd.) Hadley Williams, Lt.-Col. C.A.M.C.

The Medical Board's report recommended "continuation of treatment for period of three months till April 7th, 1918, as Out-patient."

On 3 Apr 1918, Gandier was examined again by a Medical Board at London, Ont., and a new Medical History of an Invalid form was completed. The examining doctors updated his condition as:

"Sinus has healed since last Board. Forearm shortened 2 1/2 inches. Pronation and supination 25 degrees of movement. Some loss of sensation along ulnar edge of hand and both sides of little finger. Flexion of middle finger at 1st interphalangial joint 45 degrees (former board 30 degrees). Epitrochlear gland enlarged but not tender. Otherwise the condition is the same as in the last Board."

Among the detailed description of the effects of the wound and subsequent surgeries on his arm, Gandier's grip strength was assessed as reduced by 75%. This Board considered that Gandier's disability and the required treatment would last another four months. Their concluding recommendation was that Gandier be "transferred to Category Ciii for a period of six months as per Specialist's advice Jan 5th, 1918, then a Bone operation will be beneficial."

On 5 May 1918, Gandier proceeded overseas to England once more with a reinforcement Draft from London, Ont. This Draft had been formed by the 1st Depot Battalion, Western Ontario Regiment. This regionally named depot unit was one of the Canadian units formed in early 1918 to recruit and train new soldiers for the C.E.F. after the raising of new numbered infantry battalions ceased. They were geographically located and named in a similar manner to the named regimental depots in England.

After returning to England, Gandier was re-admitted to Lady Carnarvon's Hospital on 3 Jul 1918. Case notes from this hospital on Gandier's arm include: "Operation 4 July. Plating and wiring of Radius. Upper third. Not much union yet. Wish him to return for flesh graft in about eight months, over scar in region of ulna and later for bone graft. There is every prospect of making his arm almost a nominal one again."

Three months later, on 11 Oct 1918, Gandier was examined by a Medical Board at 13 Bernier's St., London, Eng. At the age of 31, Gandier's length of service was 42 months, of which 27 months was spent abroad and 15 months at home. Of this service, less than one month was spent in France. His disability was recorded as "G.S.W. R. Forearm with fractured radius" which had occurred on 15 Sep 1916 in France. The board summarized his case history:

"Was wounded at Courcelette 15/9/16. Wound healed leaving an ununited fracture of R. Radius. Returned from Canada, was given permission to remain here for further treatment, and was admitted to Lady Carnarvon's Hospital for Officers, 3/7/18. M.C.S. from that Hospital states that fracture was plated and wired by Mr. Wilfred Trotter, F.R.C.S. (He states on 4/7/18). X-Ray taken 8/10/18 shows only slight. The arm went septic after operation from old septic foci, but has healed now, although it was thought that the plate would need removal. The arm must remain in a spling such as he is wearing for a long time till x-ray shows good bony union and quite a strong junction. A flesh graft in 8 to 12 months time would be advisable after excision of external scar. It will be necessary some months after excision, a bone graft for ulnar defect and possibly repair of tendons shot away in lower 1/3, leaving about one inch of the lower end at the wrist, which is displaced upward from the wrist, and is probably atrophying. An irregular oxostosis from tip of lower end of ulna appears to be growing toward wrist, while an oxotosis from radius is in contact with the ulna in its middle third. A spur, exostosis, from ulna is growing into soft tissue on ulna side of forearm. Moderate sized shrapnel piece can be felt in wrist, where only pressure on it causes pain." (A more detailed description of the condition of Gandier's arm followed with accompanying x-rays.)

"Subjective: Stiffness of wrist; weakness and stiffness of fingers. Hand is functionally useless. No pain in hand, except there is pain cause when hand lies on palm, by pressing over piece of shrapnel in wrist. Pressure here causes sharp stabbing pain; if the elbow rests on table a sharp pain is caused in arm, originating in area of shrapnel."

Gandier's present condition was noted as:

"R. Forearm — a piece approximately two inches long just above the wrist, of the Ulna, is deficient. The fracture of the radius, which is plated and wired is in the proximal half of the bone. There are very extensive scars running from above the elbow down the forearm. The arm is tender to pressure. It is worn in a splint. He is otherwise normal.

"Recommendation:— Invaliding to Canada. To travel by hospital ship."

Gandier's disability was not expected to be permanent, although he would need to continue wearing a splint and would need further operations. He would not be fit for service within six month and was therefore recommended for further treatment at "an officers' military or auxiliary convalescent hospital," with invaliding to Canada.

Gandier was admitted to Granville Canadian Special Hospital, Buxton, on 21 Oct 1918. His Medical Case Sheet notes:

"Wounded Sept. 16 G.S.W. R. Thigh and G.S.W. with fracture of ulna and radius in middle third. Good union ulna. (sic) Returned to Canada and on duty escort on transport. Incomplete union of radius. Secondary operation July 4th at Lady Carnarvon Hosp. for Officers. Plating and wiring of radius. Wound healed, good result."

On 30 Oct 1918, Gandier was struck off the strength of the 1st Depot Bn., W.O.R. In what appears to be a back-dated appointment, authority was granted for his appointment to the W.O.R. from 13 Mar to 30 Oct 1918. Sailing for Canada aboard His Majesty's Hospital Ship Neuralia on 30 Oct 1918, he was taken on the strength of No. 1 District Depot (D.D.) at London, Ont.

Gandier appeared before another Medical Board at London, Ont., on 11 Nov 1918. The Board noted that his address after being struck off strength of the C.E.F. was P.O. Box 145, Port Elgin, Ont., and that his former trade was Traveler (Hardware). Comments from the Board's report included:

"Complains of dull ache in right forearm on jarring or exercise and of inability to move right wrist or to full flex right fingers. Examination: Well developed end nourished. There is a linear scar 6" long on the posterior surface of the right forearm upper third and a crescentic scar 6" long lower third posterior surface of the right forearm upper third and a crescentic scar 6" long lower third posterior surface. There is an ununited fracture of the radius upper third. There is an ununited fracture of the radius upper third. There is no suppuration. It has been healed 6 weeks. English X-ray 8-10-18 shows only slight union. Shoulder and elbow movements normal. Wrist flexion active and passive nil. Extension: Active through an arc of 10 deg. limited 55 deg. passive through an arc of 35 deg. limited 50 deg. due to fibrous ankylosis. There is a piece of shrapnel lodged in wrist shown in X-ray."

The text of a report from Lady Carnarvon's Hospital, dated 9 Oct 1918, stated:

"Operation. 4th July, 1918.

"Fracture of upper third of R. Radius ununited, plated and wired by Mr. Wilfred Rotter, F.R.C.S. X-ray taken 8-10-18 shows only very slight union. The arm went septic after the operation from old septic foci, but has healed up now, although it was thought that the plate would need removal.

"The arm must remain in a splint such as he is wearing for a long while till X-ray shows good bony union and quite a strong juncture. Also the arm will need rest and strain will have to be avoided.

"A flesh graft, after excision of the extensive scar will be necessary and would be advisable in 8 to 12 month's time (if bony union then good). Then it will be necessary some months later to Bone graft for the Ulnar defect and any possible repair to tendons attended to at the same time. We would like him to return here for these special operations. - Signed G.S. Sneyde, F.R.C.S.

The recommendation of Lt.-Col. Hadley Williams was to "Wait eight months for further Surgical Treatment." The Medical Board recommended Gandier's transfer to the Orthopedic Hospital in Toronto and to Military District No. 2.

On 18 Nov 1918, Gandier was posted to the District Depot's Hospital Section, and then to the Details Company. He was granted a subsistence allowance of $1.70 per diem in lieu of rations and quarters. Gandier's pay records also show that some administrative accounting was also catching up, on 26 Nov 1918 he received an indemnity payment for lost kit in the amount of £17-5-0 ($83.95).

Gandier was struck off the strength of D.D. No. 1 and attached to Clearing Service Command (C.S.C.), Quebec, on 20 Jan 1919. The Official History of the Canadian Forces in the Great War, 1914-19; The Medical Services, by Sir Andrew MacPhail (1925), describes the role of this organization:

"All casualties from England were taken on the strength of the Clearing Services Command, and upon arrival officers and men were sent by that organization in specially equipped hospital trains to the military district in which they individually resided. There they were taken on the strength of the hospital section of the district depot, and were admitted to one of the large district hospitals erected and maintained by the Department of Militia and Defence, where they were treated until finally disposed of."

On 29 Apr 1919, Gandier was promoted to Acting Captain while employed as Adjutant of a Permanent Conducting Staff. Gandier's new rank was promulgated in the Canada Gazette. The entry stated: "Western Ontario Regiment.—To be acting Captain whilst employed as Adjutant of a Permanent Conducting Staff: Lieutenant Everest Baldwin Gandier, C.E.F. (7th Regt.). 29th April 1919."

As MacPhail explains; "The permanent conducting staffs [were] in charge of all inward and outward transports. Under this system the medical and other documents of incoming troops were completed at sea; the clearing depots at the ports were abolished, the transports and hospital ships were emptied, and troops were dispatched without delay to their various home districts." Gandier sailed on the R.M.S. Royal George, Sailing Number 506, as the Adjutant of Permanent Conducting Staff Number Seventeen.

Gandier ceased to be attached to C.S.C. on 26 Jul 1919 and was transferred back to M.D. No. 1. Rejoining the Hospital Section, he was granted landing leave and subsistence allowance until 11 Aug 1919. In London, Ont., Gandier was a patient of Western Ontario Military Hospital (W.O.M.H.) from 28 Jul to 24 Sep 1919 (59 days). The capsule case note entry in his record states: "Right forearm retained on splint. Two inches of ulna just above wrist is deficient. Wounds healed. Transferred to St. Andrew's Mil. Hosp. Toronto to await transfer to Dominion Orthopedic Hospital (D.O.H.) for operation as recommended by Capt. Harris of D.O.H."

Rejoining the Depot from Landing Leave on 11 Aug 1919, Gandier was then granted special furlough to 11 Sep 1919 with subsistence allowance. On 11 Sep 1919, he rejoined from special furlough.

Two weeks later, on 24 Sep 1919, he was struck off the strength of No. 1 D.D. (W.O.M.H.) on transfer to St. Andrews Military Hospital, No. 2 D.D., Toronto, Ont. He was taken on strength in Toronto and posted to the Hospital Section. Gandier was a patient of St. Andrew's Military Hospital from 24 Sep 1919 to 22 Jan 1920 (120 days). His records note: "Massage, Galvanising, Muscle function. Not much change. For operative treatment at Dominion Orthopedic Hospital (D.O.H.) Transferred."

On 29 Sep 1919, Gandier's wrist was X-rayed at St. Andrew's Hospital. The radiology report noted:

"Transverse fracture radius, right, between upper and middle thirds. Fracture plated end to end and wire bound over fracture. Ends in opposition, little if any callus. No apparent loosening of screws. Fracture also through middle third well united with callus. Shortening and overlapping about one inch lower fragment to outer and posterior of middle fragment. Appearance of sequestra here.

"Portion of lower end ulna missing, leaving a gap of about 2 1/2 inches between the shortened shaft and the head of the bone. Head of the bone very rarefied but in normal position. Loose piece of rarified bone in the gap. Long spender spur running downward off the side of the ulna. Several small pieces of shrapnel, one in wrist anterior to carpus, one near lower and upper fragment ulna and three anterior in soft tissues this area, also some shrapnel dust this area. All bones of forearm, wrist and hand rarefied."

Gandier was admitted to the D.O.H. on 22 Jan 1920. The synopsis case note in his record states: "Massage, Gym. And functional training carried out on hand and wrist. No operation advised. No splint advised. Discharged as medically unfit." Gandier was the subject of another Medical Board and resulting Medical History of an Invalid at D.O.H. on 16 Mar 1920. His home address at the time was recorded as Teasdall Hosiery Mills, Ltd. London, Ont., and his occupation as Commercial Salesman, Hardware. With the usual detailed summary of his case and medical condition, the Board's noted that further treatment at the time would not likely be of material benefit, but added "massage, functional training, etc., to hand and arm proved of value in the last 6 weeks, and if the arm and hand does not maintain its progress, it should be resorted to again." The Board noted that Gandier's hand prevented him from resuming his former occupation and it recommended discharge as medically unfit.

In Gandier's service record is a detailed medical examination report from the D.O.H. titled "Condition when finally boarded for discharged, March 17th, 1920." The report began with a synopsis of his case:

"Wounded 15-9-16 Courcellette, shrapnel fragments causeing flsh wound of rt. thigh and fract. of both bones rt. forearm. To #8 General, Rouen, dressed. On 19-9-16 to Lady Carnarvon Officers' Hospital, There the thigh healed up in December, 1916, and arm healed in April, 1917, Opened up again until June, 1917, Had Radius plated and wired on 4-7-18; went septic one month later and discharged for two months but healed up in Sept. 1918; the plating and wiring (by Mr. Trotter) were not removed and has remained healed since. To Buxton on 21-10-18 and to Canada 30-10-18; admitted to Military Hospital, London, Ont. as an out-patient; remained so until appointed to Clearing Services Command, 18-1-19, Carried on with the Clearing Services till 31-7-19 when he was admitted to Military Hospital, London, Ont., transferred to St.Andrew's 28-9-18 here massage and muscle function given. To D.O.H. on 22-1-20 where massage & muscle function and gym. continued, Has noticed much improvement in hand and arm in last 6 weeks." [Here followed a detailed objective description of the physical results of his wounding, and the mobility and dexterity of Gandier's right wrist and hand.]

The report concluded with:

"There is 1 1/2" atrophy of the rt. upper arm. There is 1 3/4" shortening of rt. forearm."

"Subjective:- Stiffness of wrist; weakness and stiffness of fingers. Hand is functionally useless; no pain in hand except there is pain caused when hand lies on palm by pressing over piece of shrapnel in wrist. Pressure here causes sharp stabbing pain; if the elbow rests on table, a sharp pain is caused in the arm originating in area of piece of shrapnel."

Gandier was discharged, medically unfit, from the C.E.F. on 19 Mar 1920. His Certificate of Service (the officer's version of a Discharge Certificate) summarized his service as "served in Canada, England and France, with the 33rd Battalion, 36th Battalion, 19th Battalion, 1st Western Ontario Regiment, Clearing Service Command, and Districts No. 1 and 2."

For his service in the C.E.F., Gandier was entitled to receive the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. These were despatched to him at 377 Wellington Ave, London, Ont., on 16 Dec 1921.

The Free Press of London, Ont., in its 22 Apr 1922 edition, dedicated a page to the Ontario Commercial Travelers' Association. Centred in the page was a list of members who had enlisted for overseas in the Great War. The list included E.B. Gandier, London.

Gandier's mother died on 11 Jun 1922. The London Advertiser carried the following notice in its 19 Jun 1922 edition:

"Mrs. J. Gandier Passes Well-Known Resident of Southamlton Dies Suddenly iof Apoplexy

"Special to London Advertiser.

"SOUTHAMPTON, June 18.—-Mrs. Gandier, wife of Rev. J. Gandier of the Anglican Church, died suddenly at her home here from an attack of apoplexy.

"The deceased had been in her usual good health, and about 10 o'clock in the evening she was in the act of preparing a bed for her son, Capt. E.B. Gandier, who had motored from London, when she was stricken with apoplexy and expired almost instantly.

"The late Mrs. Gandier was born at Port Hope. 70 years age, her maiden name being Mary Victoria Bate.

"Her husband, five sons and two daughters survive: Rev. M.C. Gandier, Port McNicoll; S.H. Gandier, Vermillion, Alta; A.W. Gandier, Toronto; B.P. Gandier, Windsor; Capt. E.B. Gandier, London; Mrs Richard Carnegie, Sandusky, O., and Mrs. Charles Webster, Detroit.

"The funeral was held from the family residence to Port Elgin Cemetery Friday afternoon."

In the December 1922 Militia List, Gandier is shown as Instructor of Musketry for the Western Ontario Regiment (W.O.R.). The 7th Regiment "Fusiliers" was re-organized under a new title, "The Western Ontario Regiment," in 1920 (General Order 39, 1920). The regiment would keep this title until 1924 when it was again renamed, to The Canadian Fusiliers (City of London Regiment).

Officer appointments in the W.O.R. were published in the 29 Apr 1924 issue of The London Evening Free Press. Captain E.B. Gandier was appointed as second in command of "B" Company. His Company Commander was Major Hamilton Bingle, a pre-War ex-Royal Fusilier who had gone overseas in the Great War with the P.P.C.L.I. and was later appointed to an Imperial Commission with the 9th Battalion, The Bedfordshire Regiment, and a temporary Captaincy whilst commanding a Company in the Middlesex Regiment, completing his service on 1 Mar 1919.

On 5 Jul 1924, Everest Gandier wed 28-year-old Rhea Pearl Smith, of Sarnia, Ont. The ceremony took place in London, Ont.. The 12 Jul 1924 issue of The London Evening Free press, on its page "Realm of Women" carried the following item:


"A quiet wedding took place on Saturday, July 5, when Rhea Pearl Smith, only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. M. Smith, of Sarnia, was married to Captain Everest Baldwin Gandier, of Toronto, son of Rev. J. Gandier and the late Mrs. Gandier. Mr. and Mrs. Gandier left for a short honeymoon, and on their return will live in Toronto."

The Couple's marriage certificate confirmed Gandier's residence in Toronto and gave his current occupation as Sales Engineer.

Everest Gandier died at Lion's Head, Ont., on 5 Jun 1991. A Mason, his death was recorded in the Proceedings 1992 published by the Grand Lodge, A.F.&A.M. of Canada in the province of Ontario. He was a member of No. 64, Kilwinning Lodge, London.

Pro Patria

Visit a randomly selected page in The O'Leary Collection (or reload for another choice):