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Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Guysborough Enlistment - September 21, 1916

Carmen Milward Croft was born at Guysborough, NS on November 19, 1896, the son of Rev. William Isaiah and Mary Elizabeth (Thompson) Croft. The youngest of four children, Carmen enlisted with the 246th Battalion at Camp Aldershot, NS on September 21, 1916. He rose to the rank of Company Sergeant Major prior to the unit’s departure for England on May 31, 1917.

Upon arriving overseas, Carmen “reverted” to the rank of Private upon receiving a transfer to the 17th Reserve Battalion. Twice promoted to Acting Lance Corporal, he reverted to ranks each time, to increase his opportunity to serve at the front. Finally, on March 16, 1918, Carmen was transferred to the 85th Battalion (Nova Scotia Highlanders) and joined the unit in the field on April 3, 1918.

After almost five months’ service in the line—including the battle of Amiens (August 8 - 11, 1918)— Carmen returned to England for officer’s training, prior to receiving a commissioned rank. Initially appointed Acting Sergeant on August 31, Carmen was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant on November 22, 1918. He enrolled with the Khaki University of Canada, London, on February 3, 1919 and proceeded to the Royal Technical College, Glasgow, for completion of a course of study.

Carmen departed England on July 18, 1919 and was formally discharged from military service on July 31, 1919. He subsequently settled at Ottawa, where he commenced employment as a chemist. Arriving in Vancouver, BC in July 1927, Carmen departed for New Zealand shortly afterward. He married Sybil Marion Martin at Auckland, NZ in 1928. The couple’s first son, John Martin, was born the following year. Two more children - a boy and a girl - later joined the family.

The family returned to Vancouver, BC in 1932, but relocated to San Francisco, California in 1941 and moved on to Hawaii in 1949. Carmen Milward Croft passed away at Sydney, Australia in 1955, and was laid to rest in Forestlawn Cemetery, Vancouver, BC.

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