Wednesday, November 7, 2012


War of 1812 - 1814: Official reports suggest British/Canadian losses were 8,600 killed, wounded or missing, while the Americans suffered a total of about 11,300 casualties. Undoubtedly, there were many more on both sides, since the records kept by many militia units were neither complete nor accurate. Deaths from disease among the regulars, militia and First Nations also would add substantially to the totals.

1837 Rebellion: 325 dead, 27 of them soldiers and the rest rebels, while 13 men were executed (one by the rebels), one was murdered, one committed suicide and 2 prisoners were shot.

American Civil War 1861-1865: there were over 50,000 British North Americans (Canadians) that fought for the Union and over 10,000 for the Confederacy. It is estimated that several thousand died during the battles and from disease. Canada, at the time of the American Civil War, was only a Colony of Great Britain and became a country in 1867 partially because of the effects of the Civil War.

1870 Battle Of The Belly River: The Battle of the Belly River was the last major conflict between the Cree and the Blackfoot Confederacy, and the last major battle between First Nations in Western Canada.
The battle took place on the banks of the Belly River within the present limits of the city of Lethbridge Alberta. A devastating outbreak of smallpox had reduced the strength of the Blackfoot, and a Cree war party had come south in late October, 1870 in order to take advantage of that weakness. An advance party of Cree’s had stumbled upon a Peigan camp and decided to attack instead of informing the main Cree body of their find.
The Cree and Assiniboine Indians which included Big Bear (Mistahimaskwa), and Piapot (Payipwat), who both lead the attack.
Just in nick of time the Metis Scout, Jerry Potts with a group of Peigans and 2 Blood bands who armed with repeating rifles came to their assistance. After a daylong battle the Cree’s and Assiniboine, who lost about three hundred of their number, were put to rout. The slaughter was such that Jerry Potts said; “You could fire with your eyes shut and be sure to kill a Cree.”

US Fenian Raids into Canada 1866 – 1871: Canadians - 16 killed, 2 dying later of wounds, 2 dead by heat stroke, 74 wounded, 6 captured from the Queens Own Rifles, Caledonia Rifles, 13th Battalion, York Rifles and the 2nd Battalion. Fenians - 5 killed, 2 dying later of wounds, and 17 wounded. American Casualties = 1, Sadly a Mrs. Eccles of Vermont was accidentally shot and killed by a Canadian soldier while she was watching the battle while standing on her doorstep during one of the raids.

Reil Rebellion 1885: At the Battle of Duck Lake 56 NWMP Police and 43 volunteers. They faced a similar number of Metis and First Nations, of those who died on the Police side the number was 12, and on the Metis side there were 5 killed in action. After this battle there was fear that all of the First Nations and Metis in the West would begin a war against the white people. So a total of 3300 White soldiers left Eastern Canada in the hopes of bringing peace back to the West. Meanwhile, 2000 troops in Western Canada prepared to join in as well.
Battle of Fish Creek: Altogether, 10 soldiers died and 45 were wounded; and on Gabriel Dumont's side, 5 died and 1 was wounded. Also, 55 Metis and First Nations horses had been killed.
Battle of Batoche: When Gabriel Dumont later dictated his account of the events, he stated that, "The balance sheet of these four days of desperate fighting was for us, 3 wounded and 12 dead." Gabriel Dumont's totals were radically different from the totals that General Middleton claimed. General Middleton wrote that 173 Metis were wounded and 51 were killed. It appears that both Gabriel Dumont and General Middleton were not very good at counting.

Boer War 1899 -1902: 7,400 Canadians were sent to South Africa. 224 were killed in action or by accidents and disease. Another 252 were wounded.

World War I 1914 - 1918:
1. 628,736 Canadians served.
2. 66,573 died and 138,166 were wounded.
3. 2,818 were taken prisoner of war.
4. 175 merchant seamen died by enemy action.

Canadian Siberian Expeditionary Force 1918 – 1919: was a Canadian military force sent to Vladivostok, Russia during the Russian Revolution to bolster the allied presence. Composed of 4,192 soldiers and authorized in August 1918, the force returned to Canada between April and June 1919. Leaving behind 14 who were killed in action.

Spanish Civil War 1936 – 1939: the Canadian government declared its neutrality on the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War. Most people in Canada favoured neutrality but some men joined the International Brigades. About a 1,000 Canadian citizens joined the defence of the Popular Front government. By the end of the Spanish Civil War almost half of the Canadian volunteers had been killed.

World War II 1939 - 1945:
1. 1,031,902 Canadian men and 49,963 Canadian women served.
2. 44,927 died and 43,145 were wounded.
3. 8,271 were taken prisoner of war.
4. 1,146 merchant seamen died by enemy action.

Korean War 1950 - 1953:
1. 26,791 Canadians served.
2. 516 died and 1,558 were wounded.
3. 33 were taken prisoner of war.

UN Peace Keeping 1956 - 2001: Canadians killed in action while on UN assignments since 1956. Looking at the larger picture, at least 122 Canadian peacekeepers have died while on UN assignments somewhere since 1956. The number would be much higher, of course, if we counted those who died during training or related exercises.

Viet Nam Conflict 1959-1975: it is estimated that 3,500-4,000 Canadians served in various U.S.A. Forces in South East Asia. It is also estimated that 100-145 died or were MIA (bodies never recovered). Canadian casualties are included in the USA totals.

1991 Gulf War:
1. 3,837 Canadian men and 237 Canadian women served.
2. There were no Canadian casualties or prisoners of war during the Gulf War.

2001 to date the Afghanistan War:
Canada's role in Afghanistan, consisting of operations against the Taliban and other insurgents in southern Afghanistan (Kandahar Province), has resulted in the largest number of fatal casualties for any single Canadian military mission since the Korean War. A total of 158* members of the Canadian Forces have died in Afghanistan between February 2002 and November 10th, 2011. Of these, 132 were due to enemy actions, including 97 due to IEDs or landmines, 22 due to RPG, small arms or mortar fire, and 14 due to suicide bomb attacks. Another six Canadian soldiers died due to friendly fire while conducting combat operations. An additional 19 Canadian soldiers have died in Afghanistan as a result of accidents or non-combat circumstances; 6 in vehicle accidents, 3 unspecified non-combat-related deaths, 3 suicide deaths, 2 in a helicopter crash, 2 from accidental falls, 2 from accidental gunshots and 1 death from an illness. 615 soldiers have been wounded in action and 1,244 have received non-battle injuries since April 2002.
In addition to these troop deaths in Afghanistan, 1 Canadian soldier was found dead of non-combat-related causes at Camp Mirage, a forward logistics base in the United Arab Emirates near Dubai.

2011 Libya NATO Mission:
1. Canada's 630 RCAF and Royal Canadian Navy personnel served on this NATO mission in support of the Libyan Freedom Fighters.
2. There were no Canadian casualties or prisoners of war during the Libyan Mission.

They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

By Sir Richard…

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