Wheal, James Henry (the 4th)

  • Township: Embro & West Zorra
  • Rank: Sergeant
  • Branch: Army
  • Date of birth: 1921
  • Date of death: 1975
  • Burial location: Avondale Cemetery, Stratford, Ontario, Canada
  • Wars Served: World War II
  • Country enlisted with: Canada


James Henry Wheal (the 4th) (1921-1975) was born in Stratford, Ontario.  He joined the Hastings Prince Edward Regiment and was a Drill Sergeant at Camp Ipperwash before requesting transfer to active duty overseas and was sent to North Africa.  He battled across North Africa, through Sicily and north into Italy before being gravely wounded in action just south of Florence. He was hit with 8 pieces of shrapnel in the lower back and was shot through the throat, sideways.  He would have been left for dead on the field had he not reached out and grabbed the leg of one of the nighttime searchers looking for the dead and wounded.  After the war he worked at the CNR shops in Stratford. He married Verla Grace McDonald and they lived in Harrington West (963640) for about 25 years.  Jim's nephew Tom Wheal of Stratford has very fond memories of many visits to Jim and Verla's home in Harrington.  He recalls the peaceful, quiet surroundings and they always had a large vegetable garden.  This was quite the novelty for a "city boy".  Jim was an avid stamp collector and acquired many rare Canadian stamps.  Jim and Verla are both buried in Avondale Cemetery, Stratford, Ontario.  


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