PRIVATE ROBERT EMERSON NICKERSON
2ND SEPTEMBER 1918 AGE 21
BURIED: DURY MILL BRITISH CEMETERY, FRANCE
Robert Emerson was 21 when he was killed in action on the 2 September 1918 in the capture of the Drocourt-Queant Line. A fisherman from Clark's Harbour, Nova Scotia, he had joined up in March 1916 and been in France since February 1917. Wounded twice, once in the face and once in the arm, he also spent some time in hospital with Scarlet Fever in June 1917.
His elder brother Warren, who had been badly gassed, returned to Canada to recuperate and was about to be sent back again when the war ended. A younger brother, Frederick, wounded at Passchendaele, had his leg amputated and another brother, Minard, died of influenza.
What gave his father, who chose his inscription, the idea that his son had died to uphold world civilization? It would have been the Allied Victory Medal awarded to all the combatants of every Allied nation with the same agreed wording in the various different languages on the reverse - 'The Great War for Civilisation'.
Warren Nickerson and his wife, Jacobine, called their son, born in 1920, Robert Emerson Drocourt Emerson, Warren's brother's names with the addition of the location where he had been killed. Robert joined the Canadian Air Force on the outbreak of the Second World War. He qualified as a pilot and was killed over Cheshire flying a Hurricane which crashed due to a leak of glycol.