Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Melvin Silas Laughren

In memory of:

Private Melvin Silas Laughren

February 13, 1944

Military Service


Service Number:

K/69993

Age:

36

Force:

Army

Unit:

Seaforth Highlanders of Canada

Citation(s):

39-45 Star, Italy Star, War Medal 1939-1945, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal and clasp.

Additional Information


Born:

April 16, 1907
Shawville, Québec

Enlistment:

December 10, 1942
Vancouver, British Columbia

Son of Mr. Wilfred and Mrs. Dorcas Laughren. Brother Irvin, Gordon, and Viola Laughren, and Thelma Box.

Commemorated on Page 360 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance. Request a copy of this page.

Burial Information


Cemetery:
Grave Reference:

X. H. 15.

Location:

By the winter of 1943, the German armies in Italy were defending a line stretching from the Tyrrhenian Sea north of Naples, to the Adriatic Sea south of Ortona. The Allies prepared to break through this line to capture Rome. For its part, the 1st Canadian Infantry Division was to cross the Moro River and take Ortona. In January 1944 the Canadian Corps selected this site, intending that it would contain the graves of those who died during the Ortona battle and in the fighting in the weeks before and after it. Today, there are 1,615 graves in the cemetery, of which over 50 are unidentified and 1,375 are Canadian.

The Moro River Canadian War Cemetery lies in the locality of San Donato in the Commune of Ortona, Province of Chieti, and is sited on high ground near the sea just east of the main Adriatic coast road (SS16). The cemetery can be reached from Rome on the autostrada A25 (Rome-Pescara) by branching on the autostrada A14 and leaving it at Ortona. The approach road to the cemetery from the main road passes under an arch forming part of the little church of San Donato. The cemetery is permanently open and may be visited anytime.

Information courtesy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Digital Collection

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  • Entrance– Entrance - Moro River Canadian War Cemetery - May 2013 … Photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Cemetery– Moro River Canadian War Cemetery - May 2013 … Photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Grave Marker– Grave marker - Moro River Canadian War Cemetery - May 2013 … Photo courtesy of Marg Liessens
  • Service Book– The Service Book was carried by all Canadian Soldiers. This book belonged to Private Laughren and was repatriated to Canada in December 2000.
  • Pay Book– A Canadian Soldier's World War 2 paybook, belonging to Private Laughren. Repatriated to Canada in December 2000.
  • Equipment Book– The Clothing and Equipment Book was carried by all Canadian Soldiers in thier Service Book. This one belonged to Private Laughren and was repatriated to Canada in December 2000.
  • ID Tags– Identification Tags (ID) were commonly called dog tags, and all Canadian Soldiers wore them. These tags belonged to Private Laughren and were repatriated to Canada in December 2000.
  • Victory Loan Reciept– A Victory Loan reciept belonging to Private Laughren, it was repatriated to Canada in December 2000.
  • Donor Card– A blood donor card belonging to Private Laughren, it was repatriated to Canada in December 2000.

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