Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthApril 7, 1900
Place of BirthKenora, Ontario
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinMother: Jennie Horricks, Rainy River, Ontario
Trade / CallingClerk
ReligionChurch of England
Service Details
Regimental Number2173323
Service RecordLink to Service Record
Battalion52nd Battalion
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Address at EnlistmentRainy River, Ontario
Date of EnlistmentApril 16, 1917
Age at Enlistment17
Theatre of ServiceEurope
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details

Horricks, Herbert Ray

Herbert Ray (Raymond) Horricks was born April 7, 1900 in Rat Portage, Ontario, the youngest  child of William Horricks and Jane (Jennie) Walters. His siblings were Eva, Margaret (Maggie), William (Jr), Lottie, Annie, Maud and Pearl. His father was a blacksmith from Drummond Township in Lanark County, Ontario and his mother was born in Holland Township, Grey County. The couple married March 9, 1882 in Holland Township. When William moved his family to Rat Portage (later renamed Kenora) he was still working as a blacksmith. A few years after Herbert was born they moved to the town of Rainy River.

Herbert enlisted April 16, 1917, shortly after his 17th birthday. He signed up in Winnipeg, Manitoba with the 100th  Winnipeg Grenadiers Draft, passing himself off as 18 years old. His occupation was clerk and his present address was Rainy River, Ontario. He trained at St. Charles Camp on the outskirts of Winnipeg that summer. In late January 1918 his unit headed to the east coast where they embarked on the Grampian, arriving in England on February 16th. The following day Herbert was transferred to the 18th Reserve Battalion. In March he came in contact with a case of spinal meningitis and he spent two weeks in No. 11 General Hospital in Shorncliffe, under observation. On May 19th he was drafted to the 52nd Battalion and sent to France. After about two months at the Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp he joined his unit in the field at the end of July.

In early August the Canadians took part in the Battle of Amiens, the first offensive in what would be the final period of the war. Late on August 11th the 52nd Battalion took over a section of the front line. Over the next three days they faced heavy artillery and machine gun fire as well as bombing by airplanes. On August 14th the battalion attacked German machine gun posts on the outskirts of the village of Damery and they also fought off a German counterattack. The unit had about 50 casualties that day. Herbert was one of the wounded, suffering a shell or gunshot wound to his head and leg.

Herbert was evacuated to No. 1 Australian General Hospital in Rouen. A few days later he was moved to the Convalescent Depot and at the end of the month he was fit for duty again. He rejoined the 52nd Battalion in early September. In October he was ill with trench fever and in November, about ten days after the Armistice, he came down with influenza. He spent twelve days recovering at No. 18 General Hospital in Camiers.

On December 15, 1918 Herbert was attached on probation to the Canadian Section, 3rd Echelon, General Headquarters. In February 1919 he was returned to the Canadian Records List and on May 11th he proceeded to England. As soon as he arrived he became ill with influenza again and he was in No. 14 Canadian General Hospital at Eastbourne for two weeks. He was released on May 26th and posted to the 18th Reserve Battalion.

Herbert sailed for Canada from Southampton on July 1, 1919 on the Olympic, arriving in Halifax a week later. His mother was listed as his next of kin and his destination was Rainy River. He was discharged on demobilization on July 19, 1919 in Winnipeg

By the time of the 1921 census Herbert was living in the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. In the  household with him were his mother Jennie (listed as widowed although her husband was still living in Rainy River) and three lodgers. While his mother was the housekeeper, Herbert was working as a clerk, age 21 and single. His father passed away in Rainy River in 1924. His mother remarried and she died in Vancouver in 1932 (Mrs. Jennie Baker).

Herbert married Alma Gertrude Percy at St. Jude’s Church in Winnipeg on September 29, 1928. When the marriage dissolved in January 1944  Alma was living in Winnipeg and Herbert in Chicago, Illinois. Nothing further is known about Herbert’s life and his date and place of death have not been found.

By Linda Pelletier and Becky Johnson


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