Croak, John Bernard

John Bernard Croak (aka Croke), soldier (b at Little Bay, Nfld 18 May 1892; d near Amiens, France 9 Aug 1918). He enlisted as John Croak, and has been documented as such, but his birth certificate records the spelling as Croke. At an early age John Croak moved with his family to Glace Bay, NS, where he later worked in the coal mines. During WWI he served with the 13th Infantry Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force, Quebec Regiment and was recognized and honoured for valour on 8 August 1918 during the opening stage of the Battle of AMIENS. John Croak was the posthumous recipient of the first VICTORIA CROSS awarded a Newfoundlander. Single-handedly, he bombed a machine-gun nest and captured the crew and gun. Despite a severe wound, he rejoined his platoon and led a charge into a trench line, capturing 3 guns and the garrison. Again he was severely wounded, and died shortly after.