Cecil George Towler came to Canada from England as a young man and settled in the Sarnia area. When the war broke out, he enlisted and was assigned to the 11th Field Company, Royal Canadian Engineers.
Lance Sergeant Towler was wounded in the forearm and shoulder early in the Dieppe operation and later spent five months recovering in a German hospital. On his way home to Canada, he visited his parents in Brandon, Suffolk County in England while on a short leave. He reported that while a prisoner, he, along with most other Canadian prisoners of war, was kept in chains for eight months in a bizarre episode of tit-for-tat wrangling between German and Allied leaders over the handcuffing and restraining of prisoners of war. He returned to his wife in Ontario.
Although wounded in the shoulder early in the Dieppe operation, 19 August 1942, Lance-Sergeant Towler collected all available stores for ferrying to shore. He also assisted in placing wounded under cover and helped dress their wounds. Later, in the face of heavy enemy fire he led a party ashore and was again wounded. He returned to the landing craft for arms and ammunition, and several times carried wounded back to the ship. Throughout the whole action he showed himself as an outstanding example to all, was conspicuous in his gallantry and utter disregard for his own safety.