A Great War D.C.M., M.M. and Bar group of five awarded to Sergeant H. Wren, 4th Battalion, Canadian Infantry, who was twice wounded in the course of his service in the “Mad Fourth”
Distinguished Conduct Medal, G.V.R. (406202 Sjt. H. Wren, M.M., 4/Can. Inf. Bn.); Military Medal, G.V.R., with Second Award Bar (406202 Pte. H. Wren, 4/Can. Inf. Bn.); 1914-15 Star (406202 Pte. H. Wren, 4/Can. Inf.); British War and Victory Medals (406202 Sjt. H. Wren, 4-Can. Inf.), together with two brass wound stripes, a ‘Canada’ cap badge and uniform M.M. riband with rosette.
D.C.M.London Gazette14 January 1919:
‘During the attack on the Drocourt-Queant Line on 31 August 1918, his company came under very severe machine-gun fire, but he rushed forward with great gallantry and initiative, and, skilfully manoeuvring a section of his platoon, captured two machine-guns and 30 prisoners. His prompt and determined action enabled the Company to advance without casualties.’
M.M. London Gazette21 December 1916:
‘On the afternoon of 8 October 1916, the Germans made a heavy counter-attack on the trenches near Courcelette, which had been occupied by the 4th Canadian Battalion in the morning. During a counter-attack made by us, Lance-Corporal Wren, with a party of men got out in the open and charged the enemy using bombs and rifles, and succeeded in driving him back about 100 yards. He then halted his party in the open and held the enemy back until a further supply of bombs could be got up. His coolness and courage were splendid examples to the men.’
Bar to M.M. London Gazette24 January 1919.
Harry Wren, who was born in Hamilton, Ontario, in May 1894, enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force in April 1915, in common with three of his brothers.
Embarked for France in October 1915, where he joined the 4th Battalion, Canadian Infantry, he was awarded his first M.M. for the above cited deeds on the Somme in October 1916, and was advanced to Corporal. Two of his brothers, also of the 4th Battalion, were wounded in the same operations, and Harry suffered a similar fate at Vimy Ridge on 14 April 1917, when he was hit in the face by a gunshot.
Remarkably, he rejoined his unit in the following month, and was advanced to Sergeant prior to adding the D.C.M. to his accolades for the attack on the Drocourt-Queant Line in August 1918. On the 28th of the following month, however, he was again wounded, this time severely so in both legs, and he was evacuated to the U.K. – this, then, the action for which he likely received his second M.M.
Wren was invalided back to Canada in May 1919, direct from No. 5 Canadian General Hospital in Kirkdale.
Sold with copied service record and local newspaper reports, including a portrait photograph.
Medals court mounted for display, NEF