Nurses of World War I: Mary Hele Hambly

Mary Hele Hambly was born in Belleville on October 29, 1885 daughter of Philip Hambly and Mary Mayo. Lieutenant-Colonel Hambly, the father of our subject, was a confectioner and caterer and served with the 49th Battalion, Hastings Rifles, Belleville during the Fenain Raid of 1864.

Miss Hambly was educated locally and when she was eighteen travelled to Philadelphia where her brother Charles worked as a retail jeweler; here she studied at the Nursing School and graduated about 1908. She worked at the Philadelphia hospital but at the outbreak of War enlisted in the Canadian Army Medical Corps on May 5, 1915 at Kingston.

Height: 5′ 6″

Weight: 115lb

Age: 29 (stated age: 28)

Nursing Sister Hambly served at the Military Hospital in Etaples, France and at several hospitals in England. She suffered illnesses during her service and required hospitalization on many occasions with diagnoses including influenza, neurasthenia, pleurisy and gastroenteritis. From the Belleville Intelligencer July 22, 1916: “She was one of the first to enlist and serve, and her skill and enthusiastic work have earned her official commendation”. Miss Hambly was awarded the Royal Red Cross, 2nd Class on October 23, 1917. She returned to Canada on June 14, 1919 setting sail aboard the S.S. Aquitania and was discharged on June 22, 1919; she lived with her parents at 237 Ann Street.

After the War Miss Hambly immigrated to the United States on April 16, 1920 and was united in marriage on November 25, 1926 to James Young at Los Angeles, California.

Mary Hele Young died at Santa Ana, California on November 1, 1929 aged 44 years 2 days. She is interred at the Riverside Cemetery, California.