L/Sgt Kenneth Norman Henderson, 4th Field Company, Military Medal

Military Medal GVIR

Ken Henderson died at the age of 84 on 12 September 2002.  He was a member of the Royal Canadian Legion in Niagara Falls, ON.


On 14 September 1944, 2 Platoon, 4 Canadian Field Company, Royal Canadian Engineers, was supporting the West Nova Scotia Regiment in the assault across the River Marano. At about 1500 hours on that day, the road bridge at Map Reference 819903 was reported intact but prepared for demolition.

Following a reconnaissance by the platoon officer, during which the leads were removed from the charges, Lance-Sergeant Henderson left with a small party to lift these charges. They had been set in such a manner that it appeared as if it were intended to initiate the demolition by accurate sniping at small charges set on the parapet. Lance-Sergeant Henderson's party arrived at the bridge at about 1, 600 hours and went immediately to work. The bridge was under continuous mortar fire and spasmodic small arms fire. In spite of this, the party worked until 2030 hours removing the charges, working in the cramped positions to get what cover they could from the bridge parapet. Lance-Sergeant Henderson's leadership and courage in such circumstances set a fine example to his men, and in spite of the fact that one man of the party was severely wounded, he kept his men at work until the job was complete. He thus saved for use a most important bridge and allowed the free passage of traffic of two divisions.

Lance-Sergeant Henderson's courage and devotion to duty undoubtedly prevented the demolition of this bridge and permitted a more rapid advance of our troops than would otherwise have been possible.