William H.A. Willbond MSM, CD

Mascot of 2 QOR of C

Deuce Horn was not just any old dog
A True Rifleman he went for his morning jog
When he was on the square and on parade
He’d sit at attention, very quiet he stayed

Deuce served at Ipperwash and in Korea
At Gorden Head and at Fort McLeod
He would sit still upon the square
As the RSM shouted quite loud!

Stormin’ Norman was doing Battalion CB when he mended Deuce’s Foot
doing pack drill with Rifleman Norm, the Deuce drilled in fine form
Major McCullough asked Norman to be the Battalion Dog Man
He turned down the dog handler request, now he thinks it was a bad plan

Some say the Deuce went AWOL over in Korea
Others say that he just got lost looking for the media?
But after two weeks he again showed up
As Regimentally frisky as a new born pup!

Deuce lost his hooks – got 7 days confined to Kennel
For his absence from the lines
And Sgt Jack Gallant just shook his head
As the defaulters were marking time

Another unit’s Regimental Mascot, is a long bearded white goat
Deuce was a Regimental mastiff – he’d thrust out his chest and gloat
He is buried o’er there in Germany, near the fence at Fort McLeod
Buried with pomp and ceremony, of the Deuce, we were all very proud!


Deuce Horn – Mascot Of 2 Qor Of C
The Funeral of Rifleman Deuce Horn the 2 QOR Battalion Mascot. Full Military Honours for our friend – you were a friend to Many (First on the right is Ken Nutt of 2 QOR of C)

Deuce Horn – Mascot Of 2 Qor Of C
Rfn Deuce Horn the Battalion Mascot and his Buddy, Sgt Pop Purchase. Thanks to Jim Carroll for the pictures

Deuce Horn – Mascot Of 2 Qor Of C
“Rifleman Deuce Horn” is the name of the battalion mascot, a massive Great Dane, a year old, shown with Commanding Officer, Lieut-Col W.H.V. “Wild Bill” Matthews
The Mascot, Deuce Horn a Hugh Great Dame Dog joined the Queen’s Own Rifles in Camp Ipperwash, Ontario in 1952. He originally belonged to 2 Lt Bessete who left the Battalion to become a pilot with the Royal Canadian Navy with the fleet arms section. He died in Nova Scotia in 1953 while piloting his Sea Fury Air Plane.

When Lt Bessete left, the Queen’s Own Colonel Matthews took custody of Deuce Horn and made him the Queen’s Own Mascot. When the Battalion left for Korea, Deuce Horn was part of the Battalion that embarked with the main body. They boarded the SS Marine Lynx and in route Deuce Horn was put into a cage on the main deck.

Deuce Horn, for some reason or other, would growl and bark every time an American sailor would pass by his cage, until the soldier was past his so-called turf. He had no problems with member of the Queen’s Own and would wage his tail and allow the Queens Own near him – but not the Americans (must have been the uniform). Because of his good conduct while on the ship the CO promoted Deuce Horn to L/Cpl.

After arriving in Korea, Deuce Horn went missing for about two weeks and it was feared that he ended up in one of the Kimchi pots that were famous at the time for cooking up a good stew. Deuce Horn suddenly reappeared at the Officers mess in a state of physical disarray. He was exhausted and passed out in front of the fire place. Once he recovered to a state where he could be held accountable for his action he was charged with being AWOL and escorted before the Commanding Officer by then Lt Ron “Awful” Werry. He was reduced to the rank of Rifleman and sentenced to 14 days CK. (Confined to Kennel).

He must have learned his lesson as he never went AWOL again during his tour of Duty. Upon his return to Canada the Battalion went onto Gordenhead from there he went with the Queen’s Own Rifles to Germany to serve with NATO, at Fort McLeod Hemer Germany.

Deuce Horn, from the last report and rumours that I have (and they have varied over the years) did in fact die from Cancer in Feb 1958. His grave digging was supervised by DSM George Collins and the task completed by MCpl Seeley, Arsneault, Jim Carroll and the six pallbearers shown in the above picture. It is said that the ground was like digging in dry clay and it was hard as a rock to work with.

The 2 Battalion Queens Own Rifles was on parade for the funeral. The burial site is along the fence that separated the RCHA and the QOR of C and the far right side of the ball field. A cement marker was placed on the grave by the Sgt from Pioneer Platoon Sgt Rocky Merritt, and MCpl Frank Melton was I/C of the task.

Deuce Horn – Mascot of 2 QOR of C
Deuce Horn leading the Battalion Parade at Camp Ipperwash in 1953

Provided by Norm Van Tassell – December 2006