William Frederick Myring MM

Rank: 
Gunner
Regimental number: 
322929
Unit at enlistment: 
12th Brigade C.F.A., 54th Battery
Force: 
C.E.F.
Volunteered or conscripted: 
Volunteered
Survived the war: 
Yes
Wounded: 
Yes
Cemetery: 
Farringdon Cemetery, Brantford, Ontario
Awards or decorations: 
Military Medal
Commemorated at: 
Grace Anglican Church, Ancient Order of Foresters
Birth country: 
England
Birth county: 
Warwickshire
Birth city: 
Birmingham
Address at enlistment: 
172 Sheridan Street, Brantford, Ontario
Next of kin address: 
172 Sheridan Street, Brantford, Ontario
Trade or calling: 
Confectioner
Religious denominations: 
Church of England
Marital status: 
Married
Age at enlistment: 
40
Gallantry medals: 
Yes

Letters and documents

London Gazette: 30389
Date: November 19, 1917
Honour or Award: Military Medal
Authority: R.O. 3327, Macdonell, September 21, 1917
Name: Myring, William Frederick (322929)
Unit: 2nd Brigade C.F.A. 

Details: When on the morning of the 17th August 1917. The battery was being heavily shelled by enemy’s large caliber Howitzers with balloon observation, he voluntarily returned to the guns on five different occasions and with dixies of tea put out fires that had started in camouflage and ammunition dumps, thus preventing the enemy from observing the effectiveness of his fire and also saving a considerable quantity of ammunition. The loss of any ammunition at that time would have caused the Battery to go out of action before the arrival of a supply.

BX March 9, 1918

Gunner William Frederick Myring Was Decorated – General Hughes Pinned on the Military Medal for Work at Hill 70

Gunner William Frederick Myring of the 54th Battery was decorated with the Military Medal for his splendid work at Hill 70. The decoration was presented on February 3 by General Hughes.

BC July 16, 1917

With the 54th on Firing Line – Interesting Letter From a Member of the Brantford Battery

The following letter has been received by Mr. D.W. Moore, Palace Street, from Gunner William Frederick Myring now at the front with the 54th Battery:

June 11, 1917
Somewhere in France

My Dear Mr. Moore,

Your note of May 3, in hand very glad to hear from you, also to grant your request by answering it, which is the least I could do, although it is midnight.  I might say that I enjoyed myself immensely when in George’s company particularly the last occasion when we walked from Witley Camp to Bramshott.  I dare say George has told you of some of our escapes so I’ll not repeat, but those times are past never to return.  Life in Witley, England was one pleasant time to me, but here in France it is one of stern reality.  No doubt when the war is over those who are fortunate enough to return will get a good reception.  So they might nothing should be considered too good for the brave fellows who left home and everything that that means, to come through an inferno like this even now the heavy guns are thundering which means death and destruction in its path, so great is the concussion of our guns that it blows out the light of our candles in our dug outs and they are in the ground quite a depth, the Huns also are shelling us, so you can see how difficult it is to sleep under such circumstances.

I never regretted the day when I donned  the uniform and since coming to France, three months ago I have seen things which would make me ashamed of myself had I not done anything in the crisis.  You people at home resting in your arm chairs or sporting about following your usual calling, have very little or no idea what the Boys out here have to go through.  You can’t imagine what it is like nor can any man give any accurate description of the situation to think that Canadians who were never in love with things military, could be transformed so quickly into trained soldiers is the big marvel of the age.  Here they are fighting and serving, and enduring as if they had been at it all their lives I could tell you many, many stories of their bravery, self sacrifice and devotion to duty, which would make you fill up with pride.  The France as we used to read of (Sunny France) is sunny no longer at least what we have seen of it.  The horrible work of the Hun, greets you on every hand, and what little sympathy one might have for the Germans quickly disappears when he sees what he has done to France, we have not seen Belgium as yet.  How any able bodied man calling himself a Canadian can stay at home with Canadians such as there are here, their own chums suffering daily and putting up with God only knows what, gets beyond me.  I’d rather be crucified by the Huns than sit contently at home.  No young able bodied man worthy of the name should hesitate to get over here.

Please don’t think that I have any scores to settle I’m simply speaking as I feel. Wouldn’t it make your blood boil to see the damnable Hun firing on your wounded chums when the stretcher bearers were carrying him to a dressing station?  Why sure it would.  Well, this is what I have seen him do time and time again.  Oh, how I wish I could tell you of some of my experiences. I don’t wish to boast but many close calls have I had since in France.

I am cooking for the Officers and Gunners.  My kitchen lies between our guns and the infantry.  It is some three places of corrugated sheeting two upright ones across each 30 inches wide and two sixteenth of an inch thick.  I build any fire between two rails and cook the food in Dixies; it is very unpleasant at times.  To give you an idea about a month ago old Fritz sent over 470 rounds of big shells trying to put our Battery out of action.  The gunners always make for their saps, which are 25 or 30 feet underground, but they have to be fed, and it was up to me to cook their Sunday dinner.  I succeeded cooking beef steaks, potatoes, onions and making rice pudding for 60 men.  The boys never expected dinner that day and they did not come for it until I went and told them dinner was ready, the shells were bursting all about me in one of the uprights of my (kitchen), there were no less than 17 holes made by shrapnel. I had my bootlace cut, got hit in right breast and left thigh, but only slightly.  Old Fritz never got one of our guns he spent enough ammunition that morning to bury the whole battery but I have seen him do some cruel work.

Only the other morning while watching some of his shells I saw six men struck with one.  The other night the Huns made an attack on us by dropping bombs from aeroplanes.  These bombs make a fearful noise, and Oh the cries and agony of the boys who were struck was something fearful.  Horses too, were hit as they were just bringing ammunition.  I was early on the scene next morning, when I saw the cook looking for his cook-house it was blown to pieces and you couldn’t tell where it had been.  On another occasion Fritz sent over a big shell which struck one of the howitzers sending it a hundred yards away and making a hole large enough to put B. City Hall in, two gunners were killed and all they could find of these were some of their pay books and so it goes on day after day, it makes your heart sick to see the poor chaps when they get struck here.  They lie buried in a blanket and buried in a strange county, even then the Hun very often fires on the burying grounds.  We were all through the big fight of April 9, some fight but awful, I dare not tell you as I would on account of the censor, perhaps at some future date I can give something interesting, but we have got the Huns measure now, it is only a matter of time but it is a tremendous undertaking.  How we ever got him out of position we are now God only knows for he (the Hun) was here for more than two years and naturally fortified.  He built or dug-out himself in to a depth of 50 feet had electric light plant in fact everything you could wish for.

My address is Gunner W.F. Myring, Reg. No. 322929, 6th Battery, 2nd Brigade B.E.F. France.  We have to write it as part of our correspondence.  I must conclude now as it is past one o’clock.

There will be many a vacant chair in Brantford, but then it is worth while those who are spared will have added 10 years knowledge to their lives for the most part they are a brave lot, and suffer greatly at times but never a murmur, they are anxious to get home but want to see this war through first.  Au Revoir, old friend, if I should see George I shall be only too happy to deliver your message.  You may tell any in Russell’s that I am quite well and hope to return someday.

Sincerely Yours,

W.F. Myring

BX August 29, 1917

William Frederick Myring Reported Gassed

Gunner William Frederick Myring, who enlisted with the 54th Battery, has been admitted to the Tenth Field Ambulance, having been gassed. His home is at 172 Sheridan Street and he is a popular member of Harmony Lodge, I.O.O.F.

BX March 1, 1916

William Frederick Myring Given Wrist Watch

On the eve of his departure for Toronto with the 54th Battery, a number of friends gathered together at the home of Mr. and Mrs. H. Field, Sheridan Street, in honor of Mr. William Fred Myring, and presented him with a handsome wrist watch, the enjoyable evening was spent in games and cards. 

BX January 13, 1947

Fred Myring Died Suddenly

W. Fred Myring, for more than 25 years an employee at City Hall here, died suddenly at his home 138 Murray Street early Sunday morning. He had listened to the hockey broadcast from Maple Leaf Gardens before he retired.

Mr. Myring who was born in Staffordshire, England, came to Canada more than 50 years ago. He had a distinguished record in the First Great War, being awarded the Military Medal for gallantry.  He enlisted for war service in the 54th Battery here in the early days of the 1914-1918 war and served with the Sixth Brigade (artillery) in France, where he won the Military Medal.

Shortly after his return from overseas he was appointed caretaker at the City Hall and continued in that position until his death. He was at his post on Saturday night.  In addition he and Mrs. Myring operated a confectionery store at 431 Colborne Street.

Mr. Myring was much interested in sport – baseball, hockey and bowling.  He was an ardent and widely known lawn bowler. Starting at the Pastime Club, he later went to the Dufferin Club and rose to be President.  At the time of his death he was local representative to the Provincial Lawn Bowling Association.  He was also well known fraternally being a member of the Knights of Pythias, Harmony Lodge, I.O.O.F., and Ozias Lodge, A.F.A.M.  In religion he was an Anglican and member of St. Jude’s Church.

Surviving are his widow, formerly Ada Smart, a son, William Harry, Toronto, and a daughter, Mrs. Orval (Gertrude) Patterson, City. He is resting at the Beckett Funeral Home, where service will be conducted Tuesday afternoon.  Interment will be in Farringdon Burial Ground.