Born about 200 miles east of Montreal along the southern coast of the Saint Lawrence River in 1892, Joseph Kaeble (AKA Keable) would lose his father at a very early age. This would prompt a move less than a dozen miles away to a little village called Sayabec where he would get his primary education. After this he may have had thoughts of the earlier days of whittling when he worked at a sawmill that just used bigger machines to carve up the wood. Here he was employed as a mechanic.
In September the Battalion sailed to England and was immediately amalgamated with the 69th and undertook further training. Soon the unit was off to France and would itself be amalgamated in the Royal 22nd Regiment, the famed Vandoo's who had by then already done credible battle in many fights but also having taken many casualties and would welcome the new reinforcements... especially men from their hometowns.
There would be battles at Vimy's Hill 70, then off to Passchendaele Belgium then while back in the area of Arras France he was promotion to Corporal.
Confirmation regarding dates have been difficult but the promotion may have had something to do with his earning the Military Medal at about this time, a senior medal for bravery.
In June of 1918 the Vandoos were holding their position very near to the tip of France, and just a few miles below the city of Arras at a place called Neuville-Vitasse as shown above. On the 8th, at about 10 pm the enemy launched a vicious artillery bombardment of the 22nd trenches from very close range. This continued for about an hour. Most of his men were either killed or badly wounded. When the artillery stopped 50 men were said to have led a charge.
Joseph picked up his Lewis machine gun and fired off his 47 rounds. Then picked up another, then another then another. One references says that despite being repeatedly wounded he shot off 40 magazines of ammunition and either killed or wounded all and stopped their advance. His legs, both broken, finally gave out as he collapsed backwards into his trench.
Before slipped into unconsciousness he yelled out.. "Hold on Guys, Don't let go, we need to stop them!"
Joseph was evacuated to an aid station and the following evening at the age of 25, died at hospital from his massive wounds.
One hopes that someday there will be a similar circle dedicated to Canada's brave women!
The picture above is of the vessel that the government has chosen to name after none other than Quebec, and Canada's WW1 hero Cpl Joseph Kaeble VC, MM.
Cpl Kaeble's deed was performed on June 8 1918. And that folks, was 95 years ago this Saturday!