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Harry Cross graduated from Victoria High School in 1916. During his time at Vic High he joined the Debate team; his preliminary examinations deemed as one of the highest ranks in British Columbia at 86 percent. Shortly after graduation, he joined the Canadian Expeditionary Force to fight in the Great War. While fighting in the Battle of Passchendaele, he attempted to warn his fellow troops of danger ahead, and in his efforts was subjected to the perils of gas from which he never fully recovered. Once the war ended, he attended Normal School (Camosun College), earning his teaching degree. He was teaching at North Ward School until his condition worsened. In 1922 at the age of 23, he succumbed to the effects of his war wounds.