DIVISIONAL UNIT: 4th Canadian Infantry Division
10th Infantry Brigade
50th Battalion - Calgary
Canadian Infantry Corps
SERVICE NO: 696874
RESIDENCE: Retlaw - Alberta
DATE OF BIRTH: October 6, 1880
Varna – Goderich / Stanley Townships – County of Huron - Ontario
DATE OF DEATH: August 25, 1917 36 years 10 months
MEMORIAL: Vimy Memorial – Vimy
Pas de Calais - France
MOTHER: Mrs. Martha Ward – Egmondville – Ontario
FATHER: Mr. Thomas Ward – Wetaskiwin – Saskatchewan
BROTHER: Mr. Edward Ward – Orofino – Clearwater – Idago – USA
FRIEND: Mrs. G. / Miss Berna Hernderson / Sylvia Henderson – Gull Lake - Saskatchewan
Occupation: Farmer Religion: Methodist
Enlistment: April 26, 1916 – Retlaw - Alberta
Enlistment Age: 35 years 7 months
During the months of July and August 1916, Private Ward was absent without leave for 4 days total and forfeited his pay for that period he was absent. Private Ward sailed with his unit from Halifax on October 4, 1916 on the SS Saxonia and disembarked in Liverpool on October 13, 1916. Private ward then went to Seaford with the 21st Reserve Battalion on January 10, 1917, then to Bramshott and overseas on March 21, 1917 leaving the reinfocment area on April 19th and joined the 50th Battalion already in the field.
The final act in the fight for Hill 70 took place on August 25, 1917 when the 50th Battalion advanced and attacked Aloof Trench behind a very effective rolling barrage. They achieved their objective with light casualties.
On the day of the attack the weather was fine with dry ground and light winds from the north-west. The Battalion was located at Resevoir Hill. The objective was to capture Aloof Trench, destroy all dugouts and establish posts to secure junctions of Cotton/Aloof & Colza/Aloof Trenches.
At 2 am the enemy artillery opened up onto the infantry starting their advance to Aloof Trench. Once again they felt they were advancing into the Valley of Death. They advanced unchallenged and failed to come up against the enemy. They feared death from every turn as they advanced up the enemy trench. No enemy. It was bare! During the night the enemy had pulled back knowing that in the morning the Canadians were coming.
They pushed forward another 200 yards with strong patrols and machine gunners.
Enemy artillery then fell on Battalion front but was ineffective and stopped about 5:30 am.
The casualties at midday of August 25th were 18 men missing, 38 men wounded and 11 men having been gassed.
The lone fatal casualty of this day was Private Ward who was killed in the line of duty, in the field and performing his duties.