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Canadian casualties reinterred

13 May 2015

Almost 100 years after they died in battle, eight Canadian soldiers have been reburied with full military honours at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Caix British Cemetery in France. In attendance were family members of the soldiers and representatives from the Government of Canada, the Canadian Armed Forces and the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC).

The remains of the eight men were discovered in 2006 and 2007. Items found indicated that they were First World War soldiers of the Canadian Forces - specifically men from Winnipeg's 78th Battalion of the Canadian Infantry.

Research conducted by the Canadian military authorities established that the soldiers were killed on August 11, 1918 during an advance to capture the small village of Hallu, located in the Somme region of northern France.

In 2014, following detailed anthropological and historical research that included DNA testing, it proved possible to identify five of the men. They are:

• Lieutenant Clifford Abraham Neelands
• Private Sidney Halliday, 148581
• Lance Sergeant John Oscar Lindell, 147186
• Private Lachlan McKinnon, 148130
• Private William Simms, 148691

The CWGC's, Head of External Engagement in Western Europe, Carl Liversage said: "These men fought together and died together, and today we are deeply honoured to lay them to rest together in one of the CWGC's cemeteries, in a manner that befits the sacrifice they made. We recognise their courage and will always remember them."