- Place of Use Continent - North America, Country - Canada
- Category Communication artifacts
- Sub-category Personal symbol
- Department Arms and Technology
- Museum CWM
- Earliest 1919/09/01
- Latest 1945/12/31
- Inscription (VM/MV): 877305 A.L.CPL. R.J. BOTHERSON. 25-CAN.INF.
- Support loose
- Materials Silver, Copper, Bronze, Silkworm silk
- Service Component Canadian Expeditionary ForceCanadian ArmyRoyal Canadian Air Force
- Unit 25th Canadian Infantry Battalion
- Measurements Length 12.0 cm, Width 10.7 cm, Thickness 0.3 cm
- Caption Medals Project- Botherson, Robert Joseph
Robert Joseph Botherson was born on 4 May 1897. His family lived in the mining town of Port Hood in Cape Breton where his father worked as a lobster packer. By 1911 Robert was employed as a clerk at a local store and his brother as a driver in the mines. In 1914 Robert went to Calais, Maine where he worked as a carpenter. In 1915 however, he crossed back into Canada and moved to Halifax.
He attested for the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) in Halifax on 28 February 1916, claiming his date of birth as “May 1898”, into the 185th Btn (N.S. Highlanders) and left Canada aboard SS Olympic on 13 October 1916 arriving in the U.K. 5 days later. He spent much of the war on depot duties in Whitby, U.K. being awarded an unpaid appointment as Acting Lance Corporal in November 1916. Shortly after this appointment was confirmed in January 1918 he elected to revert to Private to join his unit in France. He arrived there in March 1918 and was assigned to the 25th Battalion (Nova Scotia Rifles). By June he was serving at Brigade headquarters and did not return to his regiment until after the armistice. He was sent back to the U.K. in January 1919 for demobilization and returned to Canada at Halifax on 4 April 1919 on the transport Northland and discharged the next day.
By 1921, Robert was back in Port Hood working as a miner but returned to the United States later that year. In 1930 he is living in Los Angeles with his wife Nellie and a 2-year-old son, working as a building contractor. Here he participated in the annual conference of the California State Command of the Canadian Legion of the British Empire Service League in 1937.
At the outbreak of the Second World War, he returned to Canada to enlisted: this time with the 2nd Battalion, Irish Fusiliers of Canada on 4 September 1940. He was discharged from the in Army, on 1 December 1941, to enlist in the Royal Canadian Air Force. Botherson joined the Royal Canadian Air Force on the same day as his discharge from the Army and served until 8 March 1946. He held the rank of Sergeant while in the Army and in the R.C.A.F. attained the rank of Warrant Officer Class 2. 1946 when he returned to California. Here he married Robina Bernice, originally of Port Nelson B.C., and settled in Sun Valley California. He was naturalized a U.S. citizen in 1960 and died in Los Angeles 24 June 1971.