839115 Pte. William John Sharp, known throughout his life as "Jack", was born October 24th, 1893, on the family farm in Flesherton, Ontario, Canada, to parents William Sharp and Alice Bellamy.


Grandparents, John Sharp and Ann Gilchrist, emigrated to Canada from County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, around 1845 and Alice Bellamy's ancestors came to Ontario in 1793 from Connecticut, USA and settled in Cramahe Township, Ontario.


Jack's attestation papers, dated May 15th, 1916, were signed at Owen Sound, Ontario. Jack was a member of the 147th (Grey) Battalion, and was later transferred to the 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles. Jack's regimental number was 839115 and at the time of enlistment, Jack worked as a clerk in a Markdale, Ontario, bank.


Embarking for England, aboard the S.S. Olympic on November 13th, 1916, Jack arrived on November 20th, 1916. He was transferred to the 4th CMR, at Shoreham, England, on February 14th, 1917, and was shipped to France, arriving there on February 24th, 1917. Three days later, on February 27th, Jack was listed as being in the field in France.


After a short period of action with the 4th CMR, Jack was killed on March 14th, 1918, by a "trench mortar shell", near Petit Vimy, close to the Lens - Arras Road. On March 17th Jack was buried at Thelus Military Cemetary. Also killed by the same trench mortar shell on the 14th were Ptes. Kerr, Rennie & Sgt MacKenzie. Major Sneath, of the 5th CMRs, was also killed on March 14th in a separate incident and all 5 were buried in a military ceremony attended by platoons of the 4th and 5th CMRs.


Jack left behind his parents, a brother and sisters in Flesherton, Ontario. His brother, Robert Sharp, was my grandfather, and I remember as a child that he always remembered and would say on March 14th, that this was the day that Jack was killed in France.





This image and biography are courtesy of Debbie Bennett-Toms, with sincere thanks.