Category Archives: surname R

Private Charles Reeves

Charles Reeves served in the 2nd battalion (Ottawa) Canadian Expeditionary Forces during World War One. He is entitled to the 1914-15 Star, the British War medal and the Victory Medal

He was born on September 1st, 1880 in Ventnor, Isle of Wight

1881 Census : address 14 Commercial Tap, Ventnor, Hampshire, England

Father : Edward Reeves born in 1845     Mother : Fanny Reeves born in 1844

Brother : Edward W. Reeves born 1875   Brother : George Reeves born in 1879

Brother : Thomas reeves born in 1877

The family had two lodger James Allen (1858) and Henry Arrow (1856)

March 31st, 1901 : He was single and a butcher assistant, living with his parent at 15th Surrey street in Ryde, Isle of Wright.

He enlisted on September 22nd, 1914 in Valcartier, Quebec in the 2nd battalion G company . His trade was barman. His wife was Alice Reeves and she was living at 188 Sulton Road, Portsmouth, United Kingdom

Religion : Church of England        Height : 5′ 8″

Eyes : grey          Hair : pale        Weight : 152 lbs

September 30th  : He sailed from Quebec on the SS Cassandra. The ship arrived in Gaspe Basin on October 2nd and departed from there on October 4th.  They arrived in England on October 15th, disembarked around 10:00 pm and got on Salsbury Plain on the 16th.

November 14th : The 2nd battalion was inspected by the King. They did drill, physical training and musket training. They began to practice attack at regimental level around mid-December.

February 4th, 1915 : The 2nd battalion was inspected by the King again.

He was fined 2 $ on January 26th for being drunk in public

February 7th : Him and the regiment proceeded to Amesbury. They arrived in Avenmouth on the 8thand embarked on the SS Blackwell. They disembarked in St Nazaire, France on February 11th.

February 17th : The regiment arrived in Armentieres

March 12th : They were inspected by General Smith Dorien

April 23rd : They arrived in the St Julien sector for the St-Julien battle. 2nd battalion was heavily involved in the battle of St-Julien.

May 2nd : Rest standing at Arras

May 15th : He had a concussion after an artillery exploded near him

June 11th : Back to the trenches near Givenchy

June 17th : The 2nd battalion was relieved by the 7th batt. (heavily shelled during that stay)

June 28th : The battalion was back to the trenches

July 5th : Relieved by the 15th batt.

July 14th : Back to the trenches near Wulverghem

July 18th : Relieved by the East York Regiment

July 19th : Back to the trenches near Neuve Eglise

July 29th : They were relieved by the 16th batt.

August 7th : Back to trenches near Ploegesteert

August 27th : Relieved back to the billet

He was admitted to the 2nd Canadian Field Ambulance on September 4th. He was transferred to the 3rd Canadian General Hospital on September 17th and transferred to the Convalescent Depot on September 23rd. He was finnally shipped to England on October 23rd.

He was diagnosed with shell shock. He was transferred where he won’t have to go to the front line.

He was sent back to Canada because there is no more job for him in England. He embarked on the SS Metagama in Liverpool, England on January 4th, 1919 and arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick on January 16th.

He was demobilised on February 26th.

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Private Charles Reeves British War Medal

Private Harry Ritchken

Private Harry Ritchken served in the South African Medical Corps during World War Two. He is entitled to the 1939-45 Star, the Africa Star (bar 8th Army), the 1939-45 War Medal and the Africa Service Medal.

He was born 6 October 1920.

He enlisted into South African Army on 20 May 1940. He was serving with the 7th Field Ambulance, S.A.M.C. (probably a Reserve unit). He was Jewish, single and worked as a Chemist’s Assistant at Wrens Chemist in Johannesburg.

Height: 5” 8’   Weight: 145 lbs.         Eyes: Brown   Hair: black

His Next of Kin on his enlistment paper is her mother, A. Rubenstein, living at 47 High Street, Berea, Johannesburg.

He was transferred to the Rand Light Infantry on June 11th

He was transferred back to the South African Medical Corps on December 12th. He had the rank of Corporal.

He was posted with the Motor Transport Company on January 31st, 1941

He embarked on the S.S. Niew Holland in Durban on February 15th. He arrived at Suez on March 9th and he was attached with the Cape Town Highlanders on the 13th, just before his departure.

He was promoted Sergeant in September 1st.

He was granted a 9 days leave on January 27th 1942.

He was confirmed in the rank of Sergeant on May 1st.

He was posted to 12 Field Ambulance from the Cape Town Highlanders on May 12th.

He returned to South Africa with the 12th Field Ambulance on December 11th and arrived in Durban on January 1st 1943. He was granted a 30 days leave.

June 5th: He was posted to Coastal Defence. He was transferred to the Medical Corps Transport Corps on July 26th. Although his file is silent about it, I think he was a driver.

He was discharged in Pretoria, South Africa with benefits “surplus to service requirements” on 23 February 1944. The official reason was “requirements and commitments

In South African Medical Journal of April 27th, 1946 he is listed as a new member of the South African Medical Council. His address was 142 Hockey Avenue, Northcliffe, Johannesburg. He graduated in Doctor in medicine – bachelor in medicine in 1945 from the Duiv. WWRand University

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Medals attributed to Private Harry Ritchken

Ritchken 1

Private P J Walsh and Staff-Sergeant G J Richards

Private P J Walsh served in Palestine before and in WW2 with the Royal Army Medical Corps. He is entitled to the General Service Medal (clasp Palestine)  1939-45 Star, Africa Star, Defence Medal and 1939-45 War Medal. His enlistment number 7260934

He served in Palestine in 1939. He was stationed at Reception Station in Jerusalem

He served in Europe and in North-Africa during WW2

According to the medals roll, he received his General Service Medal in 1959 which is consistent with the wide shoulder suspension of the medal and it lists him as a sergeant.

Staff-Sergeant G J Richards served during WW2 and in the Malaya Campaign in the 1950 with Royal Army Medical Corps. He is entitled to the 1939/45 Star, Burma Star, Defence medal, War Medal, the General Service Medal (clasp Malaya) and the Efficiency Medal (bar Territorial). His enlistment number was 7356346.

Served in Burma during WW2

A period of 12 years of service is needed to get the Efficiency Medal (war time count for double if he was in the army before the war started). He received his EM between 1937 and 1948, probably received it shortly after WW2 at the latest. The EM Geo VI type 1 was issued before 1948.

Served in Malaya, probably between 1950-1953 (Geo VI type 2), and his GSM is a late issue (wide shoulder suspension), he was probably out of the army by then.

Inspector Kate Galt and Jessie Robertson

Over the years I have been lucky with almost every research I did, I was able to find some information in almost every person I research except a few. Most of them are women, they are particularly difficult to research for two main reasons;

–        Many time even if they were participating at the war effort, women were part of civilian organisation and those did not kept any record on their service

–        After they involvement in the war effort many of those women married and changed their name, if you cannot find with whom they married, you lose their track right there.

It’s even more difficult if their name is common.

Here are two of those women for whom I was not able to find information.

Inspector Kate Galt served British Red Cross and Saint John of Jerusalem during WW1. She is entitled to theBritish War Medal and the Victory Medal.

Information taken from British Red Cross list 1914-18

Her rank was Inspector

Her Certificate number was 16487 and it was issued after august 1917

Her Passport Reference was 186094

and the Department she worked at is listed as “Canadian”, meaning she probably worked for the Canadians

Jessie Robertson served with Voluntary Aid Detachment during WW1. She is entitled to the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

Nursing Sister Nellie Grace Rogers

Nursing Sister Nellie Grace Rogers served as a Nursing Sister in the Canadian Army Medical Corps during WW1.

She was born on December 18th, 1889 in London, Canada.

Height: 5′ 5″     Weight : 115 lbs.           Religion : Baptist

She enlisted on November 11th, 1917 in Toronto but she only passed her medical exam on July 15th 1918 in Burlington.

She died on October 19th, 1918 from influenza in Toronto at the age of 28.

She never went to Europe. So her only medal entitlement is the British War Medal that was sent to her mother, Adelia Rogers in Listowel, Ontario with her Memorial Cross.

Her Memorial Plaque and Scroll were sent to her father, James Rogers

She is buried at the Listowel Cemetery, Ontario, Canada in lot 5. range 10.

Picture of Nursing Sister Nellie Grace Rogers gravestone

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Private George Augustus Rowles

Private George Augustus Rowles served in the 20th battalion Canadian Expeditionary forces during WW1. He is entitled to the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. His enlistment number was 3032791. His War Service Badge class “A” number was 152096.

Born on May 16th, 1893 in London, Middlesex, England 

Religion : Presbyterian     Status : Single        Hair: brown

Eyes : grey       Weight : 135 lbs       Height : 5′ 10″    Trade : watch maker

Name of the father : James G. Rowles

Name of the mother : Emily Rowles ( 1863 – 1929 )

Address : 303 Bank Street Ottawa

October 10th, 1917 : Enlisted in Toronto in the 1st Central Ontario Regiment 1st Depot Battalion

Embarked on the H.M.S. Canada on February 4th, 1918. Disembarked in England on February 16th.

May 11th, 1918 : Taken on strength with the 20th battalion.

Wounded at Amiens on August 8th. Wounds at the buttocks from an explosion of a shell. Hospitalised at the 1st Canadian Field Ambulance and then transferred to the 9th Canadian General Hospital. This wound left him partially unfit even for normal life, he had a four inches scar.

August 17th : Invalidated to England.

December 19th, 1918 : Excerpt from his medical report «No bone lesion shown, large numbers of very small fragments of metal scattered about soft tissue, mostly post to right hip, several lie just within the pelvis cavity near the sciatic notch.»

May 11th, 1919 : Embarked on the S.S. Saturnia. Disembarked in Canada. Oscar Auger was also on this ship for his trip back to home.

Demobilised on December 2nd, he was declared medically unfit.

Address after discharge : 303 Banks Street Ottawa.

Deceased on December 16th, 1953. from his Service file “Miss Rowles a nice of G.A. Rowles advised the War Services Records that her uncle was found dead on 16 th of December 1953″ Address of Mrs. Rowles 162 Pretoria.”

Obituary from the Ottawa Citizen December 16th, 1953 page 38 : “At his residence Long Island Ontario on Sunday December 13th, 1953 George A. Rowles son of late Mr and Mrs J Rowles in his 60th year. Resting at Hulse and Playfair Limited 315 McLeod Street Funeral Services in the chapel on Thursday, December 17th at 3p.m. Interment Beeachwood Cemetery”

Buried in section 17 PC 267 Beechwood cemetery in Ottawa with his mother.

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Picture of George Augustus Rowles gravestone

George Augustus Rowles WW1 medals

Nursing Sister Elizabeth Bell Ross R.R.C.

Nursing Sister Elizabeth Bell Ross served in the Canadian Army Medical Corps during WW1. She is entitled to the Royal Red Cross 1st class, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

Born on October 30th 1878 in Demerra, British, Guiana, South Africa

Enlisted on February 30th, 1916 in London, England. Before enlisting in the Canadian Army Medical Corps she served with the voluntary unit of the French Red Cross in Belgium.

Father : Reverend Francis S. Ross        Address : Brookside ave, New Glascow, Nova Scotia

Religion : Presbyterian     Height : 5’ 7’’      Weight : 164 lbs.

Posted to the Duchess of Connaught Hospital on February 18th, 1916.

To be Acting Matron on March 14th, 1917

Posted at the 10th Canadian General Hospital on October 5th.

To be Acting Matron on November 15th. (London Gazette 30382)

To be Matron on January 18th, 1918. (London Gazette 30483)

Awarded the Royal Red Cross 1st class on June 21st (London Gazette 30758)

Brought to the Notice of the Secretary of War on August 19th, 1919

Sailed to Canada on September 26th, 1919 on the Empress of France

Demobilised on October 7th, 1920.

Her WW1 pair was issued by British committee of French Red Cross

After demobilisation she went to work at the Woman’s Hospital 100th street New York, New York.

Died on March 13th, 1953. Buried in Beechwood Cemetery in Ottawa, Canada (section A, range 96)

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Picture of her gravestone in Beechwood cemetery

Nursing Sister Ada Janet Ross

Nursing Sister Ada Janet Ross served during WW1 in the Canadian Army Medical Corps. She is one of the few women who died while serving her country at war in the Canadian Army.  She is entitled to the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

Born on August 11th, 1878 in Toronto, Ontario

Height : 5’5″     Weight : 127 lbs.           Religion : Presbyterian

She embarked for England on May 1st, 1915 and arrived in England on May 10th.

It is known from a note in the WW1 files of Florence Adelaide Lemay, nursing sister, who was in the same contingent of nursing sisters that she enlisted before leaving Canada but signed her papers on May 12 th, 1915 in London, England at Kingsley Hotel 34 Victoria Street.

Transferred to the 1st Canadian General Hospital on July 28th, 1915.

Transferred at the Ontario Military Hospital in Orpington (16th Canadian General Hospital) on July 11th, 1917

Entered Canadian Red Cross Hospital on January 9th, 1918

Entered at the Canadian Red Cross Special Hospital in Buxton on June 3rd, 1918

Died on July 12th, 1918 from a peritonitis, tuberculosis and bronchitis at the age of 39.

Her medals (1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal), Memorial Plaque and Scroll and Memorial Cross were sent to her mother Mrs Joseph Ross 782 25th ave. Edmonton

The testament she did before leaving overseas is in the service file of Nursing Sister Alice Knight Ross at the Library and Archives Canada, probably a clerical mistake. The testament is signed Ada J. Ross and she left everything to her father Joseph Ross. This testament was sent on April 1922 by the “Department of Soldier’s Civil re-establishment” to the “Director of Records”. Attached to the testament there is another piece of paper with the name Alice Knight Ross on it, that’s probably why the paper was misplaced. I do not know if since then Library and Archives Canada put back into her service file.

From the Manitoba Free Press, August 8, 1918, page 7 : “Nursing Sister Ada Janet Ross, of the C.A.M.C., who died at the Canadian Nurses’ Convalescent Hospital at Northwood, Buxton, Derbyshire, England, on July 12, was a graduate of the Winnipeg General Hospital. The deceased went to France almost with the first Canadian nurses, namely, in May 1915, and remained there for two years, when she was put on hospital ship duty between Canada and the Old Country. For some months prior to her death she had been doing work at Buxton.

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Nursing sister Ada Janet Ross gravestone

Nursing sister Ada Ross funeral

Pictures sources

Private Frank Ritchie

Private Frank Ritchie served in the Scots Guards during WW1. He is entitled to the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. He was killed in action on June 16th, 1916. His enlistment number was 10247.

Born in Brechin, Forfarshire, United Kingdom in June of 1887

Trade : Male nurse       Religion : Presbyterian      Height : 5’10”

Weight : 175 lbs.            Hair : Black             Eyes : Grey

September 9th 1912 : Enlisted in Fofar, Scotland in the 1st battalion Scots Guards.

September 9th, 1914 : Transferred from the Reserve list

February 24th, 1915 : Landed in France with the 1st battalion

March 17th : Hospitalized at the 3rd Field Ambulance. Transferred to the 13th General Hospital in Boulogne on March 30th. Transferred to Chatham Hospital on April 1st and discharged on April 23rd.

May 5th : Married to Wilhemina Malcom. She was living at 96 High Street, Stonehaven.

August 17th : Embarked in Southampton. Arrived at Guards Base Depot on August 28th.

November 9th : Hospitalized for influenza at the 22nd Casualty Clearing Station.

June 16th, 1916 : Killed in action on that day. The War Diary of the 1st battalion Scots Guards reveals that, on that day, the battalion was attacked by German artillery with shrapnel and high explosive, 15 Guardsmen were also killed on that day.

He is remembered at Menin Gate Memorial in Ypres, Belgium (panel 11). This sadly means that his body was never recovered or they were not able to properly identify him.

October 24th, 1920 : His widow received his 1914-15 Star. She received his WW1 pair on March 19th, 1921. A Memorial Plaque and Memorial Scroll were also sent to her sometime after that date.

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Private Frank Ritchie WW1 Medals Index Card

Menin Gate Memorial

Captain Rowland Waters Rix

Rowland Waters Rix was a surgeon and served with the Royal Army Medical Corps during WW1. He is entitled to the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

Born on November 12th 1883 in Gillingham.

Name of his mother : Maria Rix           Name of his father : John Alfred

Address of both: 53 High St Gillingham

February 17th, 1908 : MB and Bachelor of Science at the University of London,

March : Appointed House-Physicians to Out-patients at St. Thomas Hospital

September : Appointed Casualty Officer at St. Thomas Hospital

MRCS, LRCP (St Thomas) He was a surgeon at St. Leonards Hospital in Sudbury. He was an Hon Surgeon at West London and Hon Physician at the Royal Free Hospital.

1911 UK census : Listed as living 53 High street in Gillingham Kent county with his parents

1912 : FRCS (Fellow of the Royal College of surgeons) England

February : Became a member of the South-Eastern Branch

Address 263 Napier Road, Gillingham, Kent

1913 : Medical Register shows an address of 53 High Street Gillingham, Kent.

1914 : He married Marjorie E Wagstaff registered in Berkhampstead. She was probably a nurse

April 9th, 1917 : Enlisted in the RAMC and appointed Lieutenant. He served in East Africa during WW1  but his service file not available

1918 : Had a son Rowland B Rix

September : Appointed captain

1920 to 1952 : Show as living at 51 Friars, Sudbury, Suffolks in the phone directory

1925 – 1926 : He was chairman of the West Suffolk Division of the British Medical Association.

December 26th, 1925 : Applied for his medals. Sent to 51 Friars street, Sudbury, Suffolk

1926 – 1927 : President of the Suffolk Branch of the British Medical Association.

1938 : Living at 51 Friars, Sudbury. Listed as a surgeon

October 27th 1942 : His son Jack Stephen Rix was promoted Lieutenant, RAMC

1945 – 1946 : President of the Suffolk Branch of the British Medical Association.

1947 – 1948 : He was chairman of the West Suffolk Division of the British Medical Association.

1953-56 : Living at 73 Bennels avenue, Whitstable

January 3rd, 1956 : Died at the age of 73 Bennells Ave, Tankerton Kent (late of Sudbury Suffolk) – peacefully after a long illness” per The Times online

His son served with the Royal Engineers during WW2

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Captain Rowland Waters Rix WW1 medals with his son, Jack Stephen Rix, WW2 ID discs

Nursing Sister Charlotte Helen Ross

Born on November 17th, 1893 in Iroquois, Ontario
Enlisted on January 5th, 1917 in Kingston, Ontario.
Height : 5′ 7″                            weight : 150 lbs.
Presbyterian                            Eyes : Blue
Sailed for England on February 8th, 1917.
Entered West Cliff Hospital in Folkestone on February 22nd, 1917
Dangerously hill on March 2nd, 1917. Slightly improved on March 6th, 1917.
Note from the medical report “N/S has now recovered from acute capillary bronchitis”
Proceeded overseas for duty on July 26th, 1917.
Entered the 14th British Stationary Hospital in Boulogne on November 8th, 1918.
Returned to England on December 1st, 1918.
Mention in Despatch on December 31st, 1918 (London Gazette 31089)
Sailed to Canada on February 15th, 1919.
Posted to the Queen Military hospital in Kingston on May 22nd, 1919.
Posted to Cobourg military hospital in Kingston on July 31st, 1919.
Demobilised on April 26th, 1920.
Died on June 22nd, 1956.