CEF Soldier Detail

Gunner John Frederick Hickman
Died: March 5, 1919

Regimental Number:
Survived War:
Canadian Field Artillery
Place of Birth:
Dorchester, New Brunswick
Next of Kin:
Mrs. J. A. Hickman
Address at Enlistment:
Date of Birth:
December 12, 1897
Trade or Calling:
Marital Status:
Prior Military Experience:
Place of Enlistment:
Date of Enlistment:
January 12, 1916
Age at enlistment:
5 Feet 10 Inches
36 Inches
2 Inches
Church of England
Enlisted or Conscripted:
Saw service in:
Cause of Death:
Died in War, unknown cause
Battle Died/Wounded:
Died during Kinmel Park Camp Riot.
Date of Death:
March 5, 1919
Age at Death:
Buried at:
Dorchester Rural Cemetery, New Brunswick, Canada
Prisoner of war:
Not Specified
Ethnic Origin:
LAC Reference: RG 150, Accession 1992-93/166, Box 4321-39
Canadian Virtual War Memorial
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Rank Regiment Unit Company
Gunner Canadian Field Artillery

Jack Hickman. Killed just after Armistice 1918, amid soldier riots to get home.

"Five soldiers died there in two days. Historian Desmond Morton says one of the five was "killed by a stray bullet as he waited in a hut." This was 21-year-old Jack Hickman. He was in that transit camp with another village man. Alien Drillio, and was not involved in the riots themselves. His brother Joe had been decorated for gallantry and wounded. So had Lieut. Fred Foster, M.C., the village friend he'd gone camping with the month the war broke out. Jack Hickman himself had repeatedly seen
action, only to die by chance, though rumor would tell another story. Many wild and unfounded rumors swept Britain, and Hickman was involved in one of them. It was said in print that he "was so horribly tortured that his body was removed from its burial place for fear of public exposure." It is true that the four other victims remained buried in Wales. It is also true that Jack Hickman's body was disinterred. But the reason it was, a brother would say years later, was the wish of the Hickman family that it be brought home. It was on its way within 2 months of his death."

Pg. 68, One Village - One War: 1914 - 1945 by Douglas How

Son of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Hickman, of Dorchester, N.B. Brother to Major Joseph Douglas Hickman, Military Cross.(ref. RG 150, Accession 1992-93/166, Box 4321 - 42).

Killed at Kinmel Park Camp Riot.

Complexion: Medium, Eyes:  Blue, Hair:  Light. Distinctive Marks:  Mole on left forarm .

Obituary -" FUNERAL OF GUNNER HICKMAN - Large attendance at Deeply Solemn Service in Dorchester - Rev W E Best Pays Fitting Tribute to Dead Hero - May 29, Dorchester NB -.............Rev Mr. Best said in part: 'It is not the usual customer of the church, that the performance of the office for burial of the dead should be made an occasion for preaching......the present occasion seems to call for a slight deviation from the order and just a brief word may not be out of place.....The large congregation assembled here today is, I take it,....a tribute of respect to the memory of one who went forth from our midst as did so many others, of the very flower of the youth of our land, at the call of King and Country; and who, having done his duty, having nobly and well played his part in the great struggle for right, was safely preserved through all the perils of the battle field, only to be stricken down under such tragic and regrettable circumstances. Had he been killed in action, his death would have been a blow to his relatives, and a loss to his native place, where he was such a general favorite. The blow is rendered doubly sad, in that, it was not so, that he met his death. There would be no good purpose served by entering into the details of the occurrences at Kinmel Camp on March 5th. But it is right and only fair to the memory of the brave lad, and the gallant soldier, that mention should be made today of the fact that Jack Hickman was in no way whatever to blame for any share in those disturbances, which led up to his death. On the day upon which he was killed he was doing his duty; at the time when he was struck by a stray bullet, he was where he had a right to be, and his death humanly speaking was purely accidental and in no sense whatever his own fault. Of this we have abundant testimony, both from the evidence of those who were present in the camp at the time of the riot; and also from an official communication, lately received from the military authorities after enquiry into the circumstances. It is doing him bare justice that this should be said, because unfortunately, owing to the form in which the newspaper reports were received, there appeared to be for some time no very clear information as to whether Gunner Hickman was amongst the rioters or an innocent victim of a disturbance for which he was not to blame, and in which he was in no way involved. It is a matter concerning which, I believe no very definite statement has appeared in the Canadian Press. Indeed it was for some time a source of distress to his friends, that from the press reports, there seemed to be at least reason for question on this point, and it was a great relief to have the matter officially set at rest; and the name of a brave soldier cleared of any suspicion even of indiscipline or unruly conduct....' After reference to the death of his mother, who passed away while he was in France.....the speaker alluded to the thought of the beloved mother and the child of her prayers, now reunited in Paradise... Trinity Church was crowded to its utmost capacity, with a very representative body of people, Moncton, Shediac, Memramcook Sackville, Port Elgin and Amherst being largely represented. Flags were half-masted on every flag pole in town. The public schools were closed for the afternoon. Every place of business was closed, and every office was closed to do honor to the fair name of the dead hero. The funeral procession was led by a detachment of Khaki clad soldiers, numbering about thirty. The following returned soldiers performed the duties of pallbearers: Major H R Emmerson, Lieut H G Palmer, Lieut Willard Hutchinson, Sergeant Edgar Cole, Pte James Walker, and Pte Ernest Getson....The casket was covered with the empire's standard, and a rich profusion of cut flowers."

Newspaper Extract 3/8/1919 Kinmel Park Riots