B73386 Cpl Addison Garfield Wilkie Fleury enlisted in the 1st Battalion, 48th Highlanders, in Toronto in September 1939. They departed for Halifax by CN train on 17 December 1939, sailing on the Reina del Pacifico. They landed in the Clyde on 30 December then went by train to Aldershot’s Corunna Barracks arriving New Year’s morning. During 1940 they trained at Aldershot. Our regimental history Dileas names Fleury during a particularly strenuous training exercise called Exercise Tiger and uses his nickname “Hardrock”. Fleury was the battalion’s shoemaker (qualified Shoemaker Class III) and as the troops objected to new boots when theirs were worn or damaged he would work on the move and at night to meet the demand during long route marches.
Fleury remained with the battalion while they trained in England, including one desperate transfer to France in June 1940 which lasted but a week – boat from England, train 300 km into France to a town named Sable-sur-Sarthe, where they were ordered to return. They did so by commandeering the train and returning to the French coast to catch one of the last two ships back to England. All this occurred two weeks after the British evacuation at Dunkirk. On 21 May 41 Fleury transferred to the Royal Canadian Ordinance Corps which was “more suited to his trade”. Fleury returned to Canada for medical reasons and was discharged 09 Dec 42 in Toronto.
After the war “Hardrock Fleury” was a Proud Mason and Canadian Legion member for many years. His after war employment included being the Manager of the Atomic Energy Plant and also the Fire Chief in Deep River, and a Jail Guard at the Don Jail in later years. He volunteered at the local variety store in Fenelon Falls in his later, retirement years. He won 3 big lotteries, $25, 000 and 2x 10, 000 lottery wins. He was a candy maker (maple cream, sponge toffee and homemade ice cream for his son and grandchildren (1 son and 4 grandchildren). He and his wife retired in Fenelon Falls.
NOK: Wife Betty Fleury, 32 Peterborough Ave. Toronto.