James Robertson Brandt

James Robertson Brandt -
The Winnipeg Evening Tribune -- December 15, 1942
Driver, 3 Div. Ammunition Coy., RCAF

Service Personnel Information

  • Name: James Robertson Brandt
  • Service Regimental Number: H/37659
  • Rank: Driver
  • Height/weight: Height: 5ft 10-1/2 Weight: 169
  • Colour of eyes: Hazel
  • Marital status: Single
  • Religion: Lutheran
  • Address: 570 Castle Ave., Winnipeg, Manitoba
  • Next of Kin (and relationship): Jeanne Margret Robertson
  • Date of enlistment: March 1940
  • City and province of enlistment: Winnipeg, Manitoba


James Robertson Brandt
James Robertson Brandt was born on October 21st 1920 in Winnipeg Manitoba. His mother Jeanne Margret Robertson raised James and his sister Shirley as a single mother. His father Thomas Robertson divorced Jeanne in 1927 giving the mother full custody of the children(p.17 military docs). He then left the family and his location became unknown (p.15 military docs). He and his family were Lutheran, spoke English and he could read Swedish. After reaching his Junior Matriculation, James went on to work for Dahl Company Lt. as a printers devil for 6 months before enlisting to the military. After serving his time in the army, James would have wished to work Security Life Insurance Company (p.13 Military docs). He enlisted into the military in March of 1940, a single 20 year old man living with his mother and sister at 570 Castle Ave., Winnipeg Manitoba.

When enlisting into the military, James was 5ft 10 tall, weighed 159 pounds, had hazel eyes and good development (Certificate of medical examination). After having enlisted in March of 1940, he was sent overseas in August, 1941 as a driver and disembarked at Liverpool England (p.7 military docs). In World War 2, a driver’s main job was to deliver mail to its destination or a driver could sometimes be sent to take care of things such as traffic control. After serving over a year with the 3rd Division Ammunition Company as a driver in England, James got into a deadly accident. On December 12th 1942, James was on convoy duty with Sgt. Fraser. Fraser then left to take over traffic control and later while directing traffic could see a motorcyclist on the ground down the road. He went to the accident and there was James on the ground covered in blood and his motorcycle had crashed into a lamp post. Sgt. Fraser stated that he had known James for over 2 years and that James had been riding for around a year and a half and had been a “capable rider and a steady chap”(p.2 Court of Inquiry). Some evidence that may point to the reason for his accident would be the witness of Pte. MacNaughton. MacNaughton was a transport driver of the 3rd Cdn Div Amn Coy stationed at Slinfold, Horsham. He said he was travelling in a convoy truck when he passed James on a military motorcycle at around 30mph looking down at the stand of his machine which had apparently fallen from its fixed position and cause sparks as it touched the ground. James then came to a bend in the road where he was not able to turn therefore crashing into the lamp post. Finally when MacNaughton got to the scene of the crash, James was breathing but was not conscious so he was brought to the No. 1 Cdn Gen Hospital. Once James got to the hospital, witness Major C.R. Salsbury, a registered Medical Practitioner and a Major of the royal Canadian Army Medical Corps, said that James was admitted to the hospital at around 4:30pm with his face covered in blood. After the first examination, no injury was found and the bleeding seemed to be coming from the nose. When a post mortem examination was made, Major William H. Mathews found that James had a fracture at the base of his skull, subarachnoid haemorrhage, multiple skin abrasions and haemorrhages in both aural canals, nostril and mouth (p.3 Court of inquiry). The final opinion of the court was that James was a competent rider having over a years’ experience and died of the accident cause by negotiating a left turn due to the stand on the motorcycle having fallen down.

After his time in service, James was awarded three medals. A Defence Medal, War Medal and a Canadian Volunteer Service Medal. The defence medal was established on August 16th 1945 and was awarded to Canadians who served 6 months in Britain between September 1939 and May 1945. On the reverse of this medal, a royal crown rests on the stump of an oak tree flanked by a lion and lioness. The ribbon is light green and has a stripe of orange. The orange is meant to represent the enemy attacks on the green land of England. The War medal was awarded to full time personnel of the armed forces and merchant marines for serving 28 days between September 1939 and September 1945. On this medal you may see a lion standing on the body of a double headed dragon. This is to signify the principal occidental and oriental enemies. Lastly the Canadian Volunteer Service Medal was granted to anyone from any rank who actively served and completed 18 months of voluntary service from September 1939 to march 1947. On this medal there are seven marching figures that represent the men and women of the army, air force, navy and nursing service.

James Robertson Brandt died on December 12th 1942 at Horsham, Susses after crashing his motorcycle into a lamppost while on duty. He was awarded a defence medal, a war medal and a Canadian Volunteer Service Medal. James is buried at the Brookwood Cemetery in Surrey, England in plot 39, row B, grave 5 and he may be found in p.110 in the Book of Remembrance.

Medals and Awards

Defence Medal
Canadian Volunteer Service Medal
War Medal
Defence Medal
Defence Medal

Canadian Volunteer Service Medal
Canadian Volunteer Service Medal

War Medal 1939-45
War Medal 1939-45


Military Service Record
  • Age (at death): 21
  • Force: Royal Canadian Army Service Corps
  • Unit: 3 Div. Ammunition Coy.
  • Service Number: H/37659
  • Honours and Awards: Defense Medal, War Medal, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal
  • Photograph: Here
  • Next of Kin (and relationship): Jeanne Margret Robertson (mother)
  • Date of Death: December 12th 1942
  • Country of Burial: United Kingdom
  • Cemetery: Brookwood Military Cemetery
  • Grave Reference: 39. B. 5
  • Location: Surrey
  • Book of Remembrance: 1942 p.110 (10th name in right column)

external image ww2110.jpg

Grave Reference

  • Name of Cemetery: Brookwood Military Cemetery
  • Grave Reference: 39. B. 5
The Brookwood Military Cemetery is the largest commonwealth war cemetery in the United Kingdom, covering 37 acres.

Additional information/links


  1. "Casualty." The Winnipeg Tribune [Winnipeg] 15 Dec. 1942: 13. Rpt. in
    Newspaper. Winnipeg: Manitobia, n.d. 13. Manitobia . Web. 23 Apr.
    2012. <http://manitobia.ca/content/en/newspapers/WPT/1942/12/15/articles/
    rs>. picture and newspaper article
  2. The Canadian Press. "War On Sea Raiders ." The Winnipeg Tribune [Winnipeg ] 15
    Dec. 1942: 1. Manitobia. Web. 25 Apr. 2012. <http://manitobia.ca/content/
    en/newspapers/WPT/1942/12/15/articles/1.xml/iarchives>. News on day of
  3. Canada . Veterans Affair Canada. "The Second World War - 1942 Book of
    Remembrance ." Book of Remembrance - 1942. 110. Veterans Affairs Canada .
    Government of Canada, n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2012. <http://www.veterans.gc.ca/
    eng/collections/books/bww2/page1942>. Book of Remembrance
  4. Canada. R.C.A.F. Procedings of a Court of Inquiry. Head Quarters : n.p., 1942.
    Print. Witnesses
  5. Commonwealth War Graves Commission, CWGC. Casualty details. Commonwealth War
    Graves Commission. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2012. <http://www.cwgc.org/
    search-for-war-dead/casualty/2928746/ROBERTSON,%20JAMES%20BRANDT>. Grave
    Reference and cemetery
  6. - - -. R.C.A.S.C. "Canadian Active Service Force." Canadian Active Service Force
    Attestation Paper . Winnipeg: n.p., n.d. Print. Extra background
  7. "Orders, Decorations and Medals." Veterans Affairs Canada. Canada, 10 Jan. 2011.
    Web. 15 May 2012. <http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/collections/cmdp/
    mainmenu>. Medals and Awards


Archival Reference

Internet Sites


example from LAC