1914 - 1944 (30 years)
||Gordon Drummond Sim |
||10 Aug 1914
||, Ontario, Canada 
||Wilfred Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario
||WW2 - Major Unit: Highland Light Infantry of Canada, R.C.I.C.  |
||Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada
|School Teacher |
||109 College St., Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada
|Eby ID Number
||6 Sep 1944
||, France 
||Calais Canadian War Cemetery, Leubringhen, , Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France
||16 Jul 2019 |
|Born - 10 Aug 1914 - , Ontario, Canada
|Education - - Wilfred Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario
|Occupation - School Teacher - Bef 1944 - Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada
|Residence - Bef 1944 - 109 College St., Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada
|Died - 6 Sep 1944 - , France
|Buried - - Calais Canadian War Cemetery, Leubringhen, , Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France
- Again, however, not everyone returned from battle. Having trained with the COTC on campus, Craig Alles joined the Scots Fusiliers of Canada on July 29, 1942. Alles participated in the liberation of Holland, but was killed in action on April 12, 1945. On September 6, 1944, Major Gordon Drummond Sim was killed in action in France, leaving behind his wife, Mildred Elizabeth Sim.
The Cord Weekly 9 Nov 2005
MAJOR C. D. SIM KILLED IN ACTION
Major Gordon Drummond Sim was killed in action on September 6, while serving with the Highland Light Infantry. He was a son of David Sim Sr., and the late Mrs. Sim. The young officer attended Kitchener public schools and the K-W Collegiate where he was president of the Student's Council and premier of the Ontario Older Boys' Parliament. A graduate of the Ottawa Normal School, he obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree at the U. of W.O. in June 1937. Previous he had attended Waterloo College during the years 1934-37 where he was noted for his scholarly and efficient work. He married Miss Mildred Roedding who was also a member of the Kitchener public school staff. Later Major Sim taught in the public and continuation schools at Ottawa where he enlisted with the Highland Light Infantry on July 12, 1940. He was sent overseas in the following year. He was a member of St. John's Anglican Church and choir, and taught in the Sunday School. He is survived by his wife, his father, five brothers, and one sister.
The College Cord Nov 1944
Canadian Who Liberated A Village
He accepted the surrender of 2,000 Germans all by himself and marched them back to the Allied lines armed with only a tommy gun.
This Remembrance Day, when the world is torn between remembering the sacrifices of two world wars and visualizing the honors of a possible third, a priest in the quiet French hamlet of Toumai-sur-Dive remembers a happier wartime incident.
Father Launay, in fact, remembers the occasion very well. It was Aug. 21, 1944. The green and usually peaceful countryside of Normandy was in flames. As German armies reeled back from the disaster and carnage of the Falaise Gap with Allied armies in full pursuit, town after town in this picturesque and historic part of France was caught up. in the honors of modern warfare.
Tournai-sur-Dive was one of these. Strong elements of the German 7th Army were entrenched in and around the village. The Allies turned 400 pieces of artillery against this stubborn foe. The shells started to hammer down and they did not choose between Frenchman and German.
The 500 villagers of Tournai-sur-Dive burrowed into the ruins. Father Launay knew he had to stop the fighting or most of his parishioners would die. So at 3 P.M. on Aug. 21, he succeeded in convincing the German major in charge of the village that it was suicide to continue the fight.
A German junior officer volunteered to accompany the priest to the Allied lines to attempt to arrange a cease-fire. They got through the brutal barrage and then encountered advancing Canadian troops.
The Canadians named a single soldier to accompany Father Launay back to Tournai-sur-Dive to accept the sur-render of the Germans. And this is just what happened. The lone Canadian, when he reached the village, accepted the surrender of 2,000 Germans. Father Launay, his village saved, watched the Germans disappear, the Canadian shepherding them with the help of a sub-machine-gun. Then, suddenly, he realized that he had forgotten to ask the name of the soldier who had delivered his village.
For 17 years he tried to locate the Canadian soldier. The surrender which saved the community was commemorated by a panorama in the nearby museum at Laigle, including two wax models \emdash one of the priest and one of the unknown Canadian soldier.
Then, almost 17 years after the incident, the story became known in Canada. And in Kitchener, Ont., reporter pave Green, of the Kitchener-Waterloo News Record, came up with the answer Father Launay was looking for.
Maj. Gordon Sim, a Kitchener school teacher who went to war with the famed Highland Light Infantry, seemed to be the man in question. Sgt. Harvey Knipfel, C. D. Campbell (H.LL adjutant at that time), and other Kitchener veterans recalled that it was Maj. Sim (Susie Sim to his men) who had taken part in the single-handed capture.
But Father Launay and the village of Tournai-sur-Dive will never be able to express their thanks to this Canadian soldier. Two weeks later, as the fighting rolled over the city of Rouen and burst out on to the fields and wooded hills beyond, Maj. Sim, 30, was killed in action.3a
3aWeekend Magazine. Vol. 11 No. 34, 1961
Although Major Gord Sim's body was recovered by a patrol, Cpl. Banks body had to be dropped when hidden enemy began firing on them.
It was getting late in the day, but an early summer evening provided enough light for the burial party. From the safety of the battalion's perimeter they set off with the body of Major Sim to a church cemetery in a nearby village named Condette.
Captain Jock Anderson had selected this spot from his map, and in the empty village the jeep parked, after which the funeral party unloaded the body, which was neatly wrapped in a standard grey military blanket on a stretcher. Through a typical high old wall surrounding the church grounds the small procession made their way; there was Jock, Doug Barrie, a piper and four soldiers carrying the stretcher as pallbearers.
By the ancient wall a spot was picked to dig, and it was quiet as they did so, just the sound of shovels churning the earth. Then, Simmy's body was carefully lowered into the shallow grave dug to military standards, to facilitated later recovery, and Jock completed the service. The piper then played a lament which echoed beyond the church grounds and the empty village, while the burial party listened in silence. Long shadows of a late summer day cast over old gravestones, and a newly placed wooden cross. The tune was called Mist Covered Mountains; it was the fulfillment of a request Gord had made to Jock:
"...he said, `I'm either going to get the Victoria Cross or I'm going to die; and I think I'm going to die. So when they bury me, I'd like them to play Mist Covered Mountains. "'
"I marked it on the map where he was buried, " Jock explained, "and showed it to the CO ... and he says, `Padre! What are you doing? We haven't cleared that place yet!"'
It is a depressing affair that the body of Cpl. Banks was left behind as the HLI moved to new positions in the forests surrounding Mont Lambert, just outside of Boulogne. The S.D.G.s, who took over in this area, reported the Free French spotted Germans in the cover of night booby trapping his body; a common practice.4a
4aThe Regimental History of the H.L.I. of Canada, from which quotes will be used below here, on this page, with additions from "Proud Heritage, Vol4", the Regimental history of the Sister regiment: The "Imperial" Highland Light Infantry (from Scotland) - https://pipesforfreedom.com/webtxt/0502THE_HIGHLAND_LIGHT_INFANTRY_OF_CANADA.htm 2014
- [S1886] Military - Canada - Second World War Service Files Canadian Armed Forces War Dead.
Sim, Gordon Drummond 30 years Birthdate: 1914 Died: 1944 Sep 6 Rank: Major Unit: Highland Light Infantry of Canada, R.C.I.C. Force: Army Service Number: C48112 Additional Details son of David & Cora Sim - wife Mildred Elizabeth Sim of Kitchener, Ontario