491328 Sgt. Thomas "Tom" Depper was born in Hereford, England, on November 17th, 1892. The Depper family consisted of father, Thomas, mother, Annie, children: Thomas, Ada, Gertrude and Wilfred (born in Hereford, England) and Edna & Florence (born in Toronto).

The Deppers emigrated to Canada in 1900 and settled in Toronto, but finding that there was not a suitable market for their orthopaedic shoe business, they moved to Detroit in 1910, where they resided in Brooklyn Ave. Tom became an electrician by trade and belonged to the Teamsters Union.

After the outbreak of war, Tom crossed over to Windsor, Ontario, and on June 5th, 1915, enlisted into the 33rd Battalion, being part of 'D' Company. Tom was amongst 190 men of the 33rd who were transferred to the 4th CMR on June 7th, 1916 to bolster numbers after the huge losses of June 2nd's "Battle for Mount Sorrel" (indeed, the 33rd Battalion provided a total of 206 men to the 4th CMR over the course of the war).

Tom is listed as being wounded on September 30th, 1916, during a period of chlorine gas attacks, but there are no specific details as to the extent of his wounds as it seems he was not removed from the battlefield. However, whilst Tom didn't tell too many stories of the horror of war, the only one recalled by his grandson, Richard Buller, is "drinking crème de menthe with the whores in Paris"!!

Around this time, Margaret Lillian Doherty (1898 - 1982) was corresponding with a soldier from her hometown of Northwood. This soldier became betrothed to another lady, but suggested that Margaret write to Tom, who didn't get much mail. The O'Dohertys were United Empire Loyalists from Ohio, but dropped the O' after emigrating to Canada.

At the end of the war and the troops' return to Canada, Margaret heard that the 4th CMR troop train would be making a stop in Chatham. She was attending the Canada Business College on Queen Street, near the train station. She was on the platform and asked a soldier if anyone knew Sergeant Depper. Fortunately, he was only two steps away and they met person to person for the first time. Struck off Strength on February 10th, 1919, Tom and Margaret married, they settled on Lemuel Street in Thamesville, Ontario, with Tom resuming his trade as an electrician and they subsequently had three children.

When the Royal Canadian Legion, Branch #367, was in the start up phase, Tom was very involved and, much to wife Margaret's chagrin, took out a home mortgage to assist in the initial financing. You could pretty well set your watch to 11:40 a.m., as Tom would leave home for his walk to the Branch and have his daily ration of Labatt's India Pale Ale. Tom & Margaret were both active in the Thamesville branches of the Rebekah Lodge and the Odd Fellows Lodge.

Tom retired early, in poor health due to the chlorine gas attacks, and was in and out of Westminster V.A. Hospital in London, Ontario, for most of his later years. He passed away on November 1st, 1963, and is buried at Bethel Cemetery, Kent Bridge, Ontario.

The above biography and photograph credit with thanks to Richard & Karen Buller