On the 1st of January 1918 Private Ernest Clark 1096069 of the 3rd Battalion died at 31 years of age while a
prisoner of war, of wounds sustained during a German trench raid on the 18th of December 1917 while in service with the 3rd Bn.
He was born in Lindsay Ontario on 3 December 1888 and listed his calling as that of an “instrument repairer.” He was single at the time of attestation, but married prior to going overseas. He claimed 2 months service with QOR. He was 5’6 1/2″, 134 lbs with a medium complexion, blue eyes and brown hair.
He departed Canada from Halifax on 28 May 1917, arriving Liverpool on 9 June 1917. The next day he was transferred to the 12th Reserve Battalion in East Sandling for further training. He was sent to France in early 1917 and joined up with the 3rd mid-November 1917, as the 3rd rebuilt after the losses at Passchendaele earlier in November.
During a German trench raid, possibly on the first night Private Clark was in the front line trenches, the war diary describes the actions; “At the same time another party attacked No. 4 Listening Post at N.33.c.12.97, with bombs, wounding one man. The
remaining two men retreated to warn the garrison, and upon reinforcements coming up returned to the post to find that No.1096069 Pte. E.Clark was missing. The enemy having secured a prisoner put up a signal, a red and green light, upon which an intense barrage of Trench Mortars and 5.9’s fell on our lines. Retaliation was secured and the fire of the enemy died down. The raid was most unfortunate happening on a relief night, but it is evident that the garrison was on the watch. The fortunes of war were on the side of the enemy on this occasion.”
A Red Cross report dated the 12th March 1918 was provided the Allies, stating that he had died of his wounds on the 1st of January 1918 while a prisoner of war at Friedrichsfeld Camp, Germany.
His remains were recovered after the war, as were several other Allied dead from the prison camp cemetery in Germany, for reburial at TOURNAI COMMUNAL CEMETERY, ALLIED EXTENSION , Belgium.