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Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Harold Joseph Mosher

In memory of:

Corporal Harold Joseph Mosher

July 25, 1944

Military Service

Service Number:







North Nova Scotia Highlanders, R.C.I.C.

Additional Information

Son of Dwight and Minnie Mosher. Husband of Martha Mosher, of Amherst, Nova Scotia.

Commemorated on Page 399 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance. Request a copy of this page.

Burial Information

Grave Reference:

IV. A. 9.


This cemetery lies on the west side of the main road from Caen to Falaise (route N158) and just north of the village of Cintheaux. Bretteville-sur-Laize is a village and commune in the department of the Calvados, some 16 kilometres south of Caen. The village of Bretteville lies 3 kilometres south-west of the Cemetery. Buried here are those who died during the later stages of the battle of Normandy, the capture of Caen and the thrust southwards (led initially by the 4th Canadian and 1st Polish Armoured Divisions), to close the Falaise Gap, and thus seal off the German divisions fighting desperately to escape being trapped west of the Seine. Almost every unit of Canadian 2nd Corps is represented in the Cemetery. There are about 3,000 allied forces casualties of the Second World War commemorated in this site.

Information courtesy of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Digital Collection

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  • Newspaper Clipping– From the Charlottetown PEI newspaper The Guardian. Submitted for the project, Operation: Picture Me
  • Letter - July 17, 1944 - p.1– Corporal Harold J. Mosher served with the North Novia Scotia Highland Regiment during the Second World War.  He was 23 years old when he was killed in action on July 25, 1944 in the battle for Tilly-La-Campagne.The commanding officer of the II Canadian Corps (which included the North Nova Scotia Highland Regiment),  Lt. General Guy Simonds, had ordered the assault on the German-occupied Tilly-La-Campagne using a new technique to expose the enemy line: search lights would be directed toward the sky and the light would reflect off the clouds onto enemy positions, thus enabling the advancing Canadians to see the enemy position while themselves remaining hidden by darkness.  There was no rehearsal and the men were not well briefed on what would happen. What happened was that instead of the searchlights being directed towards the clouds in the sky, they were directed towards the village of Tilly, exposing the silhouettes of the advancing Canadian infantry to the German machine-gunners who took advantage of the blunder and managed to kill several dozen of the Canadians.  They continued the fighting until reaching their objective of Tilly-La-Campagne.  However, at dawn the next day, they realized that they had not achieved their objective, and part of the town remained in German hands. Continued below next page of letter.
  • Letter - July 17, 1944 - p.2– Supported by armour, the Germans launched a counter-attack and, outnumbered and cut-off, the North Nova Scotia Highland Regiment was decimated by the German SS.  When Canadian headquarters ordered the remaining men to regroup and attack again, Canadian officers refused, saying it would be murder.   Canadian Brigadier,  Dan Cunningham, came out to visit the battlefield, and the scene convinced him that the attack must be called off.  Brigadier Cunningham is quoted, I couldn't send them back against the SS.  It would have been murder.  I decided to go and see Keller and tell him it was all off. ... He ordered me to attack again.  I told him that would be murder.  He said if I didn't attack again, we'd both lose our jobs.  I told him I had a law position waiting for me back in Kingston, and I was not about to sacrifice my Highlanders to save his job.

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