Abraham Dufresne

Private Abraham Dufresne, E13171
Riviere-au-Renaud, Quebec
Le Régiment de la Chaudière

Private Dufresne is sponsored by Lt. Col. Ernest Côté.
Private Dufresne était parrainé par Lt. Col. Ernest Côté. 

Abraham Dufresne was born 9 October 1920 in Riviere au Renard, in the Gaspé region, Quebec almost 8 hours northeast of Quebec City. He was the fourth oldest in a family of ten children. Abraham also had three half-sisters in his family. He was fisherman and a lumberjack in Rivere au Renard. He enlisted at the age of 20. His mother Adeline Paradais was 54 and his father Paul Dufresne was 74 when he enlisted.

Abraham enlisted with the Regiment de Chaudiere. He was a single when he enlisted in the army and was single when he died on June 6th, 1944.  Dufresne was sent to the base “Valcartier” which was the primary base during the Great War. He then travelled 7 hours to Sussex, New Brunswick where was training facility for the Canadian Military. This camp held the 3rd Infantry Division. The 3rd infantry was initially as machine battalion.

The Regiment de Chaudiere were sent over sea to England of August on 1941.Abraham was admitted to the hospital as he had a case of the grippe. He arrived on the 2nd of December and left 3 days later on the 5th of December. The Regiment de Chaudiere (LRC) was a reserve battalion on 6 June 1944.  They came on shore at Bernieres- sur- Mer as part of the second wave in support of the Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada. LRC shocked locals as the civilians were not expecting francophone on the ally forces.

The LRC were the only French speaking regiment in Operation Overlord. Abraham died on the beaches for the attempt to capture the city Caen. He was awarded 5 medals well being part of the Regiment de Chaudiere; 1939-45 Star, France-Germany Star, Defence Medal, War Medal, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal and Clasp. He is buried in Beny-Sur-Mer in Normandy France.

Abraham Dufresne left his home of Riviere au Renard and travelled 8 and a half hours to Valcatier which is a main training base for 3rd Infantry Division. He was taken on strength as a private on July, 14th.  He then travelled to Sussex New Brunswick to which was a training facility. Well in Camp Sussex he was taken from 2 December to 1944 until 5 December.  He was granted furlough from 1945 hours, 30 December 1940 to 1600 hours on 18 January 1941. It wasn’t until 9 July 1941 that he was granted his embarkation leave. He left Camp Aldershot in Nova Scotia to proceed overseas on 4 August 1941.

Abraham went AWL (absent without leave) a total of 7 times. He was disciplined by being confined to barracks where he would have to stay in his barrack for a period of time. The most common penalty for him was losing   He was given 2 army acts in section 15 and section 40. Section 15 is given to a soldier for absent without live. Section 40 is given for acting to the prejudice of good order and military discipline.

On 1 June 1944 the regiments that would be participating in the Normandy invasion began their final preparation.  Le Regiment de la Chaudière would board the Clam Lamont and the Landing Ship Monowai which would take them the port of Southampton out to the English Channel where they would load onto assault landing craft for the last stretch of ocean until they land in front of the coastal town of Bernieres-sur-Mer.   It had been four days since the second wave has left the port of Portsmouth, England on the 2nd of June. 24 year old Abraham Dufresne waits with his fellow members of the Regiment de Chaudière for the transmission to call the second wave to be called into action. The 9th brigade waits under the ship’s deck in their bunker. Some soldiers tried to play a game of dice in their dark stingy quarters well others are getting sick because of the rough waters of the Atlantic. They were awakened at five am as the action stations were sounded as they had sailed into the danger zone.

The Chaudière’s reported to their landing craft as they wait for the first wave to deploy. The men on the regiment waited for the word for the second wave to deploy as the anxiously wait in the English Channel. The men boarded their landing craft around 10:45 in the morning of June 6th 1944. The waters were ruff on the morning of June 6th. The Chaudière’s landing craft arrived at Juno around 11:45 in the morning of D Day. Abraham was a foot soldier and his job as a Chaudiere was to run out in a cone formation and reach the sea wall.  When they landed on the beach the war diary of the regiment noted that significant mortar fire was coming down on the beach causing considerable damage and inflicting some casualties on the men.

They would also create a bite and hold which is technically holding and creating a large amount man and waiting for the counter attack. They would also mop up any of the missions the first wave couldn’t accomplish. It was not going to be that easy though as the Germans were packed with weapons. The Germans had machine gunners spread out along the see walls, snipers hiding in the buildings of Normandy, 55 caliber firing down at them. The Germans also had the most threatening weapon in WW2, the German 88. The 88 could take out 10 people in one shot.

The Chaudière’s scampered across 150 feet of beach when the hit the sea wall. They would huddle together at the sea wall. Very few had reached the sea wall. On the day of June the 6th Abraham Dufresne was kill in action on the beaches of Normandy.  His cause of death was lost in the chaos and fighting of D-Day. The only thing that is needed to remember is that Abraham Dufresne didn’t just fight for his country Canada, but he fought to help the world and give them civilians of Europe freedom. June 6th was the final day for Abraham Dufresne but was the beginning day for a whole new world.

Abraham Dufresne was buried in the beaches of Bernieres-Sur-Mer on June 6th, 1944 in Normandy, France. Abraham was later reburied on November 14th, 1944 in Beny-Sur-Mer. He is buried in grave 10, row D in plot 10. Beny-sur-Mer is located a six kilometers south of the coast of Normandy, France (Juno Beach).

Written by: A student at the Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute in Smith Falls, Ontario, Canada.
Rédigé par : Un élève de Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute, Oakville, Ontario, Canada.

REMEMBER TODAY, REMEMBER ALWAYS.

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THIS TRIBUTE PROFILE CONTAINS AVAILABLE BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON ONE OF THE CANADIANS WHO DIED ON JUNO BEACH ON 6 JUNE 1944. THE PROFILE ALSO RECOGNIZES THE INDIVIDUAL OR ORGANIZATION WHO GENEROUSLY SPONSORED THIS SOLDIER, AND INCLUDES A MESSAGE OF THANKS AND REMEMBRANCE FOR THEIR SACRIFICE. THIS INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE IN THE SOLDIER’S NATIVE TONGUE AND HAS BEEN COMPILED BY THE LEST WE FORGET PROGRAM AND, IN SOME CASES, THROUGH THE GENEROSITY OF INDIVIDUALS CONNECTED WITH THE SOLDIERS.  DUE TO THE INCONSISTENCY OF HISTORICAL RECORDS AND THE SPARSE AVAILABILITY OF FIRST-HAND WITNESSES, WE KNOW MORE ABOUT SOME THAN OTHERS. IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO CONTRIBUTE ANY MATERIAL OR HELP IN OUR EFFORTS TO PRESENT THE BIOGRAPHIES IN BOTH FRENCH AND ENGLISH, PLEASE CONTACT: JBCA@JUNOBEACH.ORG.

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CE PORTRAIT CONTIENT DES INFORMATIONS BIOGRAPHIQUES RELATIVES À L’UN DES CANADIENS QUI SONT MORTS SUR LA PLAGE JUNO, LE 6 JUIN 1944. IL PORTE ÉGALEMENT MENTION DE LA PERSONNE OU DE L’ORGANISATION QUI A GÉNÉREUSEMENT PARRAINÉ CE SOLDAT, AINSI QU’UN MESSAGE DE REMERCIEMENT EN SOUVENIR DE SON SACRIFICE. CES INFORMATIONS SONT DISPONIBLES DANS LA LANGUE MATERNELLE DU SOLDAT ET ONT ÉTÉ COMPILÉES PAR LE PROGRAMME LEST WE FORGET ET, DANS CERTAINS CAS, GRÂCE À LA GÉNÉROSITÉ DES PERSONNES LIÉES AUX SOLDATS. EN RAISON DE LA DISPARITÉ DES DOCUMENTS HISTORIQUES ET DES RARES TÉMOINS DE L’ÉPOQUE, NOUS NE DISPOSONS PAS DE LA MÊME QUANTITÉ D’INFORMATION SUR TOUS LES SOLDATS. SI VOUS SOUHAITEZ COMPLÉTER NOTRE DOCUMENTATION OU NOUS AIDER DANS NOS EFFORTS POUR PRÉSENTER LES BIOGRAPHIES EN FRANÇAIS ET EN ANGLAIS, MERCI DE CONTACTER : JBCA@JUNOBEACH.ORG.