Josiah Alexander Chancellor Kennedy, ("JACK")
Regimental Number: 51288

Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry
& Royal Irish Rifles 

This Page Last updated: February 07, 2013

Home Table of Contents Updates Service Record Genealogy Archives Canada UK Archives London Gazette Princess Patricia's Royal Irish Rifles Prisoner of War Pension Record Nicholson Extracts Links



We began searching the United Kingdom National Archives to try and find related information that would tell us more about Grandfather Kennedy's switch from the CEF to the BEF, presumably after he recovered from his wounds of May 1915 with the P.P.C.L.I. regiment.  What we found, to my surprise was a Medal Card for JACK, something that was unrecorded in the family records on hand.

Click on these images to see the actual files received:

Once again Michael Thierens from the Canadian Expeditionary Force Study Group has assisted with his interpretation of the MIC (Medal Index Card) and  provided the following:

Top right: should read Victory (Medal) and they have scribbled R&F? on it, OFF 59 is the GRO reference where the category can be found on page 28 c?, this is the medal roll. Ditto for British War Medal. His 1915 Star Medal has the annotation Ex Dom top right and underneath that perhaps R.I.R.? A/Capt ,R&F meaning Rank and File Roll and again a reference to the medal rolls. The date 24-10-16 is exciting...because it refers to the date he got his commission with the R.I.R! They made a proper mess of things in the right hand corner as he qualified for the Star Medal as private Kennedy, so the annotation OFF 59 is wrong.

Action taken: 15/Star, BW & VM administrative gibberish. Dup. Star would think the Canadian one was issued, being different from the British one??? Theatre of War is clear: France and qualifying date is the date he disembarked in France and qualified for the Star Medal, only it can't be as he was already in France? Possible explanation: I think they misinterpreted 3 for a 5. Note: there is a unexplained gap between the date he was struck off strength and commissioned as an officer. Does that mean he returned to duty after recovering from his wound(s) and was struck of strength because he was transferred for an officers training? Take this into consideration:

        Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry 51288 Private 
        Imperial Army 51288 Private 
        Royal Irish Rifles Acting Captain 

and I'd say he was transferred to the R.I.R. as a private and then started his training, acting Captain being the highest rank he obtained.

Since the time that Michael wrote this information, we have discovered that Grandfather Kennedy was first hospitalized due to a shrapnel wound to the foot (a "Blighty" - takes you on a trip to England!).  He recovered from that and returned to the PPCLI, but only a short time later, while in the trenches, he started to suffer from the testicular swelling.  This lead to his travels through the Field Ambulance Stations, Clearing Stations and eventually to a hospital in the UK for surgery.  

Immediately after this he started his officer's training, which then lead to Josiah accepting a commission in the BEF Royal Irish Rifles.  If you look at the page on the Kennedy-Stephenson Genealogy, you will also see that cousin Thomas was with the Royal Irish Rifles, so we expect the choice of the RIR was more than mere coincidence. Grandfather Kennedy's two brothers, William and James also served in the Royal Irish Rifles and both were killed in action during the war. We have included their details on the genealogy page.

In July 2005 we were fortunate to receive additional information, thanks to Ian Bowbrick (host of the "Lost Generation 1418" forum - now closed), who kindly retrieved Grandfather Kennedy's army listings with the Royal Irish Rifles in 1917. Unfortunately, Ian also reported that A/Captain Kennedy's service records do not appear to have survived.  The details of this find is provided on the R.I. R. web page of this site.  Direct links to the documents are as follows:

Army List January 1917: Listed under 1st/2nd Bn Royal Irish Rifles
Army List March 1917: Listed under 8th (Service) Bn (East Belfast) Royal Irish Rifles.

In March 2006 we received the report that we commissioned from Chris Baker, the details of which are provided under Grandfather Kennedy's Military Service History.  Please note that there are errors in the dates in the Chris Baker report, as a result of the confusion from the two (2) sets of Attestation Papers, all apparently the result of Josiah trying to enlist as an underage soldier.  Further details on this aspect of Grandfather Kennedy's time in the CEF and BEF is detailed within this web site.


Return to HOME PAGE
2005 - 2013
Richard V. Laughton
582 Hawthorne Crescent, Milton Ontario CANADA  L9T 4N8
Royal Canadian Legion Member, Branch 136 (Pte. U.J. Waters)
Web Site Hosted by Laughton Management Corporation    Contact Us