William L. Harrison, MC
William Leeming Harrison
was born in Toronto in December 30, 1897, son of Dr. William Spencer Harrison.
He attended St. Andrew's College from 1913 to 1916.
He enlisted in the Canadian
Expeditionary Force on April 3, 1916 at the age of 19 years, 3 months joining
the 220th York Rangers Overseas Battalion. He claimed previous service
in the 9th Mississauga Horse Home Service and was a student. It appears
that he was promoted to Corporal before transferring to the Royal Flying
Corps later that year.
Directorate of History card
mentions from his letters he reported his squadron had "changed completely
three times" with only himself and the Equipment Officer remaining. "On
one occasion his engine was shot through when 10,000 feet up. He has nine
machines, seven double seaters and two scout planes to his credit, and
on March 19th won the Military Cross. What he considers his best achievement
was the bringing down of an enemy balloon two miles over the German lines.
He is a St. Andrew’s College boy."
Appointed 2nd Lieutenant (on
probation) with RFC in Canada, 21 November 1916.
Trained in England.
Served with No.40 Squadron,
15 July 1917 to 10 April 1918
Squadron, 10-12 April 1918 when he was wounded.
To England, 4 May 1918.
Credited with 12 victories which
made him an "ace".
He died in 1960.
Harry Creagen papers
at National Aviation Museum give him rank of 2nd Lieutenant and provide
the following citation:
"For conspicuous gallantry
and devotion to duty in aerial fighting. He destroyed two enemy machines
and drove down others out of control. He always showed a splendid spirit
of dash, keenness and tenacity, coupled with determination and skill in
attacking enemy aircraft."
dated 13 May 1918