White, Herbert Anthony (No. B/46807)

White, Herbert Anthony (Herbert)

Private

No. B/46807, Perth Regiment, Royal Canadian Infantry Corps

Killed in action on Wednesday 13 September 1944 (aged 26)

Buried:

Coriano Ridge War Cemetery, Italy (Grave II. C. 2)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Canadian Virtual War Memorial (Internet)

Canadian Second World War Book of Remembrance

BIOGRAPHY

Herbert Anthony White was born on 27 May 1918 in South Street, Newtownards and he was a son of James and Ellen White (nee McGuinness, sometimes Maguiness, sometimes McGinnis) who were married on 13 March 1901 in Innishargie (Balligan) Church of Ireland Church (St Andrew’s).  James White, a labourer from Glastry, was a son of Robert White, a labourer.  Ellen McGuinness, a seamstress from Rubane, was a daughter of John McGuinness, a labourer.

The White family lived at 48 South Street, Newtownards.

James White worked as an agricultural labourer and he and Ellen had at least nine children:

Ellen (Nellie, born 2 June 1901 in Ballygraffin)

Annie (born 18 April 1904 in Glastry)

Isabella (born 29 April 1906 in Rureagh)

James Vincent (born 3 October 1911 in Granshaw)

Charles Ambrose (born 14 December 1912 in Granshaw)

John Joseph (born 20 November 1914 in Granshaw)

Mary Hessie (born 1 June 1916 in Granshaw)

Herbert (born 27 May 1918 in South Street, Newtownards)

Kathleen Vera (born around 1921)

In 1927 the White family moved to Canada where they lived in Sarah Street, Orangeville, Ontario.  James White worked as a caretaker.  Later Herbert lived at 103 Mill Street, Brampton, Ontario.

Herbert was eight when the family set sail from Belfast on 9 April 1927 on route for St. John in New Brunswick.  He had to have major bone surgery on his right thigh.  After leaving school Herbert Anthony White worked in Orangeville Conservatories and at the Dale and Calvert Greenhouses in Brampton, Ontario.

On 7 April 1942, at Brampton, he joined the Lorne Scots (Peel, Dufferin, and Halton Regiment) which was a Reserve Infantry Regiment of the Canadian Army.  It was noted in his attestation papers that he was Roman Catholic, worked as a florist and he named his mother Ellen as his next-of-kin.  It was noted that he had a ‘defective right leg’ and that he was 5 feet 5¾ inches tall with brown eyes and black hair.

He made his will on 23 April 1942 and left everything to his mother.

After training in Canada, he was posted overseas.  He was transferred to the Perth Regiment and in January 1944 was wounded in action in his left hand.  When he recovered, he rejoined his unit and was 26 when he was killed in action on 13 September 1944 during the Allied advance northwards in Italy.  His body was buried on the battlefield, later exhumed, and reinterred in Coriano Ridge War Cemetery.  There is an inscription on his CWGC headstone:

SWEET JESUS HAVE MERCY ON HIS SOUL

PRAY FOR ME THAT

MY SAVIOUR I MAY SEE

R.I.P.

The death of Private Herbert Anthony White (No. B/46807) was reported in the 18 November 1944 edition of the Newtownards Chronicle where details were published about family members.

Private Herbert Anthony White (No. B/46807) was survived by his parents; his five sisters – Mrs Ellen Gaw of 16 Court Street, Newtownards; Miss Vera White of Orangeville, Ontario; Mrs Vincent McCormick of Caledon, Co. Tyrone; Mrs Thomas Kane of Brampton, Ontario; Mrs George Chadwick of New Toronto; his three brothers – Private John Joseph White (serving with the RCASC in Italy); James Vincent White of Orangeville and Charles Ambrose White of Hamilton, Ontario.