Arnold Dunning

Soldier Details:

Private Dunning is not listed on either the Victoria Park Cenotaph or the Haltonville Cenotaph. His name appears in references to Milton, thus we have included him on this site for the benefit of others who are researching soldiers associated with the Town of Milton. He is remembered on the Virtual War Memorial and in the Book of Remembrance, Parliament Buildings, Ottawa.

Dunning, Arnold
Private 87th Battalion 775477
August 15, 1917
Vimy Memorial, Vimy, France
Farm Hand in Esquesing Township
Maple Leaf Legacy Project

Commemorative Details:

Private Dunning’s body was not recovered. His name, like many other at that time, is engraved on the Vimy Memorial, Pas de Calais, France. He is one of nine (9) Milton soldiers commemorated at Vimy.

Vimy Memorial. photo by CWGC

Milton Soldiers on the Vimy Memorial (Google Earth).

Soldier Summary:

Private Dunning was living (and farming) at R.R. #3 Georgetown (Halton County) when he attested to the 126th Battalion. He was learning the farm trade in Esquesing Township.

He was taken on strength to the 116th Bn at Bramshott, UK; the 60th Bn in France; then attached to the 9th Canadian Machine Gun Company. After a short hospital stay he was transferred to the 87th Infantry Battalion (4th Division, 11th Infantry Brigade), where he served until his death.

Private Dunning was reported “Missing After Battle” on August 15, 1917 and German sources confirmed that he had died. The “Circumstance of Death File” notes that his death was reported “through German sources” which tells us he was either a POW or recovered by the Germans:

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) maintains files on these cases in their POW Digital Archives in Geneva, Switzerland. If the file contains a “PA” reference number then there is additional information from the German sources:

As this file has the code “PA 17100” we know to then extract that additional information from the German records, which are also on file at the ICRC digital archives: (see last line of German page). A rudimentary Google translation of the German text is:

Below listed paybooks were not specified a 16:10:17. Name of the paying office.

The War Diary reports on the fighting on the front lines Lens (Capture of Hill 70) during this period (1, 2). The enemy was in greater strength than expected but the feint to lead the Germans away from the primary attack elsewhere was a great success! Nicholson (Chapter IX) details the plans of Currie (contrary to Haig) to take Hill 70 rather than the Town of Lens itself. See pages 287-290 detailing the battle, resulting in Canadian casualties of 1056 killed, 2432 wounded and 39 captured.

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