Spr Leslie Ernest Bockus - 2nd Fd Coy

Spr Leslie Ernest Bockus
RCE Dieppe Memorial in Newhaven, England

Sapper Leslie Ernest Bockus enlisted in Montreal on 8 July 1940. He was an Apprentice Engraver by trade. Leslie was soon sent to the Engineer Training Centre in Camp Petawawa, ON. He qualified as a Pioneer in February 1941 and embarked for England on 6 Apr 1941.

In England Leslie was initially assigned to the Engineer Holding Unit but joined 2nd Field Company in July. With the company he was employed on camp construction at Aldershot and continued his training in south-east England until mid-May 1942 when the 2nd Canadian Division was placed in Corps Reserve. By then Sapper Oliver had qualified as an Engine Hand and a Driver. In May the company moved to Coolham and settled down to a period of more construction and training before they started their extensive training and exercise program to prepare for the Dieppe Raid.

On the Dieppe Raid, Sapper Brocus was a member of the Hicks Party assigned to demolish the Telephone Exchange building. That seven-man team was attached to the Royal Highland Light Infantry and arrived on the beach in the landing craft with them. The team was to rely upon them for cover to approach the Telephone Exchange.

Like the infantry, however, these sappers were pinned down by heavy enemy fire on the beach and at the Esplanade Wall and they could not advance into the town to demolish the Telephone Exchange. Sapper Brocus was Killed in Action. He is buried in the Dieppe Canadian War Cemetery, Hautot-sur-Mer, France.

 

{…with research assistance by the Canadian Military Engineer Museum…}

 

 

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