Lieutenant Maurice Irving Machell was born in Toronto on 6 May 1916, the son of Dr. Henry Thomas Machell and Mary Emily Broughall. He attended the Toronto Church School, Upper Canada College and Trinity College at the University of Toronto. From 1913-1914 he attended the New York General Theological Seminary.
We don’t know exactly when he joined The Queen’s Own Rifles but Machell (and his brother H.E.) both participated in the 1910 trip to England as privates.
In October 1914 in enlisted with the 19th Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force and was eventually promoted to Lance Corporal. In August 1915 he resigned from the 19th and accepted a commission with the 5th Battalion of the British Army’s King’s Own Shropshire Light Infantry.
His two brothers, Lieutenants H.E. Machall and Geoffrey Machell also served in the First World War.
He was killed in action on 13 September 1916 during an attack on Delville Wood. As his body was not recovered, he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial in the Somme, France.
Machell’s name can be found on the Honour Roll 1914-18 of Grace Church on-the-Hill, Toronto and there is a stained glass window dedicated to his memory.