CRGS Cenotaph Project – Matthew Shields


*Spelled Mathew on the cenotaph

Service Personnel Information 1914–1918

Attestation Paper
Service/Regimental Number: 826598
Present Address: Campbell River Post Office, British Columbia
Birthplace: Liverpool, England
Date of Birth: 1 August 1886
Next of Kin: Delia Shields (sister)
Marital Status: Not married
Trade or Calling: Logger
Previous Service in a Military Force: 2 years with 8th Irish Regiment
Date of Enlistment: 13 June 1916
City and Province of Enlistment: Victoria, British Columbia

Description on Enlistment
Height: 5 ft 7 ins
Chest: 34 1/2 ins
Complexion: Fresh
Colour of Eyes: Hazel
Colour of Hair: Black
Religion: Roman Catholic
Considered Fit for Duty by: W. Rayner, Medical Officer

Military Service Record 1914–1918

Force: Canadian Over-Seas Expeditionary Force
Division (battalion or company): 143rd Overseas Battalion
Unit: Canadian Infantry (Western Ontario Regiment)
Rank: Private
Honours and Awards:
Photograph: Not currently available
Date of Death: Between 26 October 1917 and 28 October 1917
Age (at death):
Country of Burial: Belgium
Cemetery: Tyne Cot Cemetery
Grave Reference: XXXI C 4
Location: 9 Kms north-east of Ieper town centre, on the Tynecotstraat, a road leading from the Zonnebeekseweg (N332).
Book of Remembrance: MATTHEW SHIELDS’ name can be found on page 325 of the 1917 First World War Book of Remembrance

His Story

Matthew Shields was born in Liverpool, England, on 1 August 1886. His parents were Matthew Shields and Mary Donnelly (m. 1875). He had three older siblings - Thomas (b. 1877), Bridget (b. 1879)(known as Delia) and John (b. 1883). In c1891 the family was living in Liverpool; Matthew Sr. was a cotton porter; in c1901 he was a team and cart owner. In c1901 Matthew was living with his parents and sister. He was listed as a general carter.

Matthew came to Canada in March 1907 on the Empress of Ireland, bound from Liverpool to St. John’s, Newfoundland. He was recorded as a carter. In C1911 he is living in Comox-Atlin and working as a logging engineer. The census states that he emigrated in 1898(?). When he attested on 13 June 1916 in Victoria, he listed Campbell River as his address. It was also recorded that he had served for two years with the 8th Irish Regiment - a Liverpool battalion. He enlisted in the 143rd Battalion but subsequently became a reinforcement to the 47th Battalion. Matthew was Killed in Action about 26-28 October 1917 during the fighting for Passchendaele. The War Diaries do not list casualties on these days. He is buried in Tyne Cot Cemetery, Belgium.

Family Bits: Matthew’s parents died in 1911 and 1913 respectively. Thus, his sister Bridget (Delia) was listed as next-of-kin.

Sources and other Canadian Military links Click Here

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