Major-General Harry Wickwire Foster, C.B.E., D.S.O.
April 2nd, 1902 – August 6th, 1964

Major General Harry Wickwire Foster

Born in Halifax, son of Major-General Gilbert Lafayette Foster, director general of the medical services of the First World War. Educated at King’s College at Windsor, Nova Scotia as a cadet. Attended school at Borkhanstead, England, Bishop’s College, Lennoxville, Quebec, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario, and McGill University, Montreal.

Joined Lord Strathcona’s Horse in 1924 and held the rank of Captain by 1934. Graduated from Staff College in Camberly, England in 1939 and was promoted to Brigade Major at the outbreak of the Second World War. Appointed to the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel and led Canadian troops in the Kiska campaign in 1943, for which he was awarded the American Legion of Merit. In 1944 was promoted to Major-General and led the 4th Canadian Armoured and 1st Canadian Infantry Divisions during their liberation sweep across France and Belgium in the fall of 1944.

After the war, presided over the court martial of Canada’s top prisoner of war, SS General Kurt Meyer. Organized and commanded Eastern Army Command. Upon retirement in 1950 took the civilian appointment of Chief Administrator of the Central European District, Imperial War Graves Commission. In 1959 married third wife Mona Leonhart (nee Parsons) and was appointed honorary Aide-de-Camp to Governor General Vanier.

"He was an outstanding soldier
and his death is a loss to Canada"
Lieutenant-General R.W. Moncel,
Comptroller General of Canadian Defense Forces

Military Medals and Decorations of Maj Gen H. W. Foster

Decorations and Medals (left to right)

  • Commander of the Order of the British Empire (C.B.E.)
  • Distinguished Service Order (D.S.O)
  • 1939-1945 Star
  • Italy Star
  • France - Germany Star
  • Defense Medal
  • Canadian Volunteer Service Medal
  • War Medal (1939-45) with Oak Leaf
  • Silver Star (US)
  • Officer of the Legion of Merit (US
  • Officier de Légion d'Honneur (France)
  • Croix de Guerre avec Palme (France)

Canadian Army Generals

1st Canadian Army generals in Hilversum, the Netherlands, on May 20th, 1945. Sitting, from left to right: Stanislaw Maczek, 1st Polish Armoured Division; Guy Simonds, II Canadian Corps; H.D.G. Crerar, 1st Canadian Army; Charles Foulkes, I Canadian Corps; B.M. Hoffmeister, 5th Armoured Division. Standing, from left to right: R.H. Keefler, 3rd Infantry Division; A.B. Matthews, 2nd Infantry Division; H.W. Foster, 1st Infantry Division; R.W. Moncel, 4th Armoured Brigade; S.B. Rawlins, 49th British Division.