Chapter 2 Continued

Lieutenant Colonel Frank Ford relinquished command of the Regiment early in March 1911. His successor, Major D.T. Smith of Saskatoon, was gazetted as Officer Commanding as from March 11, 1911. Captain W. Gordon V. Bishop had been promoted to the rank of Major and had left the Regiment to take command of the 26th Battery (Canadian Artillery) on October 17, 1910. He was succeeded as Adjutant by Captain Alex. Ross (Captain No.9, 1910), on April 16, 1911. Captains J.F.L. Embury of Regina and E.G. Shannon of Prince Albert were gazetted as Majors March 11 and June 8, 1911, respectively. It was at this time that Captain H. Snell of Moose Jaw came to the Regiment gazetted as Captain on February 17 1912. He subsequently commanded the 116th Battalion in England and France during the First World War with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel from 0ctober 22, 1915 until. August 29, 1916. Several Lieutenants were promoted to the rank of Captain: A.R. Campbell on July 14, 1910; T.E. (Tom) Perrett on March 11, 1911; J.A. (Jimmy) Cross on April 1, 1911 and F.W. (Frank) Logan on April 25, 1911. Three new subalterns were S.G. Clark, April 25, 1911; C.H. Bell, May 1, 1911 and M.J. 0'Brien, May 4, 1911.

During the later part of 1911 Lieutenant Colonel D.T. Smith relinquished the command of the Regiment in order to take over the organization of a new Infantry Regiment being mobilized in the City of Saskatoon. This Regiment, the 105th (Fusiliers), was authorized April 1, 1912 with Lieutenant Colonel Smith gazetted as Officer Commanding. Subsequently this unit became known as the Saskatoon Light Infantry with a distinguished record in the First Division of the Canadian Army in the 2nd World War.

On April 1, 1912, Major J.F.L. Embury was appointed to command the Regiment and gazetted as Lieutenant Colonel. He was a keen militiaman and gave renewed impetus to enlistment, organization and training. Shortly afterwards, Captain Alex Ross became Senior Major (second-in-command) gazetted April 1, 1912. Tom Perrett, Jimmy Cross and Frank Logan were gazetted as Captains. Captain R.H. (Harry) Read, who transferred from the Corps of Guides on April 1 1912, succeeded Major Ross as Adjutant. Harry Read was Manager of the Regina Plumbing and Heating Co. Ltd. at 1843 Hamilton St., Regina, at the time of his appointment. He subsequently went overseas with the 28th Battalion with the rank of Major serving in that unit until March 1, 1916, when he was retired and returned to Canada. The following were the subalterns taken on the strength of the Regiment at this time:

  • J.D. Dawson, April 1, l912 an accountant with the Regina Realty Co.;
  • Florent G. Arnold, a salesman with Saskatchewan Motor Co. Ltd.;
  • E. Bruce Jonah, April 1 1912, barrister with the law firm of Haultain, Cross and Jonah;
  • Walter S. McInnis, April 1, 1912, News Editor with the Standard Publishers, Ltd.;
  • J.D. Martin, April 1, 1912, a law student with the firm of Balfour, Martin, Casey and Blair;
  • Robert. J. Gibson, Apr.1, 1912, a real estate agent;
  • J.P. Brown, April 1, 1912, a clerk with the Saskatchewan Government Department of Public Works;
  • J. Donald Shooks, April 1, 1912, a clerk with the Security Loan Co.;
  • Charles H. Mackenzie, June 29, 1913, a partner in the Haberdashery firm of Mac & Mac with L.R. McVicar;
  • Alex. D. Millar, Feb 1, 1913, a partner in the firm of Millar and Ross, Real Estate and Investment Brokers, Coal and Grain Merchants.

Sunday, June 30, 1912, will always be remembered in the History of the Regiment as the first day on which it was called out on Active Service. At four o'clock in the afternoon, following a day of extreme heat, an atmospheric disturbance so serious as to be technically described as a combination of tornado and cyclone swept over a portion of Regina with no warning of the approach of a storm. Many persons were instantly killed, or sustained injuries from which they shortly afterwards died, and hundreds were less seriously hurt. Nearly three thousand persons were made homeless and over four hundred of the finest buildings and residences in the City of Regina were destroyed.

.Under the provisions of the Militia Act, all available personnel were called out in aid of the Civil Power. The principal role assigned to the Militia was the patrolling of streets against looting and to guard against the outbreak of fires. First aid and rescue work eventually formed another part of the assigned duties. It was Lieutenant Colonel Embury's first important assignment after taking command of the Regiment and his organizing ability was amply evident. The Regiment was publicly thanked by the Mayor and Corporation of Regina for its part in this rescue work. The temporary Regimental Headquarters during this emergency was at the Alexandra School. (now recently demolished) and the parade assembly point on the Vacant lot next to the Old Regina Theatre in the area where the Mid-West Motors and the Georgia Hotel now have parking lots. Many of the Riflemen taking part in this work were shortly afterwards to see the effects of War, but on a much vaster scale, in shell shattered Belgium and France.

Commencing in 1912, the territorial area over which the 95th Saskatchewan Rifles had Militia jurisdiction was greatly curtailed. Increases in population had warranted the formation of new militia units in several civic centres where more immediate local control was desirable. The Saskatoon Companies of the 95th Saskatchewan Rifles were absorbed by the newly formed 105th Regiment (Fusiliers) with Lieutenant Colonel D.T. Smith gazetted as Commanding Officer, April 1, 1.912 and A.R. Campbell and A. Dulmage designated as Majors on March .17, 1913. On January 2, 1913 the 60th Rifles of Canada, a new unit in Moose Jaw, was authorized with Major H. Snell of the 95th Regiment gazetted as Commanding Officer with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. F' and 'G' Companies were lost to our Regiment, as the result. Also on January 2, 1913 the 52nd Regiment, the Prince Albert Volunteers, was formed with Major E.G. Shannon appointed Lieutenant Colonel and Majors J.G. Wayne and J.H. Lindsay in charge. 'A' and 'H' Companies of the 95th Saskatchewan Rifles were absorbed in this new Regiment. However, in both the First and Second World Wars the personnel of this unit was to return to the present Regiment for service in Action.

Headquarters 'C', 'D' and 'E' line companies all located in Regina remained as the basis for the re-organization of the original parent unit. With characteristic tenacity Lieutenant Colonel Embury, ably assisted by Major Alex Ross, Captains Cross, Logan, Perrett and Read and with the help of a new and enthusiastic group of subalterns, soon had re-organization well in hand. Preparations went forward steadily to the day when mobilization for Active Service would be necessary.

In 1913 and early in 1914 the following Captains were appointed:

  • P. Mundell Anderson, March 30, 1913, a law clerk with the firm of Mackenzie, Brown;
  • F. G. Arnold, April l, l913;
  • Walter S. McInnis, March 1, l914;
  • John C. Secord, a lawyer with the firm of Frame, Secord, Turnbull and Fisher;
  • Sam J. Taylor, an uncle of N.J. (Piffles) Taylor of lacrosse and rugby fame and his brother Sam Taylor, Jr. a star lacrosse player (killed during the war in the Royal Air Force).

In 1913 the following junior officers joined the Regiment:

  • Lieutenant W.G.F. Scythes, April 22, 1913 at that time owner and manager of the Piano Firm of W.G.F. Scythes & Co., Banner Building, 2130 Eleventh Ave., and still residing (1960) in Regina;
  • W. Allan Child, April 22, 1913, partner in the firm of Child and Gower and manager of the Regina branch of the Nordheimer Piano Co. Ltd. at the time of his entry. He went overseas with No.2. Company of the 28th Bn. serving in Belgium and France with that unit during the years 1916 and 1917;
  • Harold C.M. Brown, March 30, 1914, a law student with the firm of Balfour, Martin, Casey and Blair, served in the C.E.F. with the rank of Captain in the Canadian Machine Gun Corps and transferred to the Reserve of Officers, November 7, 1930;
  • Alfred Gavilier Styles, Apr.22, 1913, who had previous experience in the Canadian Militia in Winnipeg and who had represented his unit in that City at the Coronation of King George V, in 1911, wearing the Coronation Medal commemorating that service. He went overseas in No.2. Company of the 28th Bn. as Platoon Commander of No.5. Platoon. Alf Styles was an outstanding Rugby football player with the original (16 man) Regina Roughriders and had starred on that team as a linesman in the fall of 1913. At the time of his appointment he was a law student with file firm of Mackenzie, Brown and Co. He served throughout the greater part or the 1st World War with the 28th Bn. C. E. F. and later as Brigade Major in the 4th Canadian Infantry Brigade. He was awarded the D.S.O. for gallantry in the field and also held the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal, the Victory Medal, the George V Coronation Medal, the George V Commemoration Medal, the George VI Coronation Medal, and the V.D. (Auxiliary Officers decoration). After the 1st World War he re-entered the Militia as the Junior Major in the 1st Battalion of the newly formed South Saskatchewan Regiment, his appointment dating from Oct.1, 1920. He succeeded Lieutenant Colonel J.S. (Jock) Rankin, D.S.O. V.D. as Commanding Officer of the 1st Bn. the Regina Rifle Regiment on September 30, 1926. On April 1, 1931 he was appointed to command the 19th Infantry Brigade with the rank of Colonel. He served as Aide-de-Camp to all of the Lieutenant-Governors of Saskatchewan from 1921 until 1948. Colonel Styles' name will appear in subsequent pages of this History. he will always be remembered as one of the most distinguished commanders in the Regiment's long history.
D.G. Scott-Calder's
The History of the 28th (Northwest) Battalion, C.E.F. (October 1914 - June 1919)
is © Copyright The Royal Regina Rifles Trust Fund. All Rights Reserved