Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthJune 12, 1893
Place of BirthWinnipeg, Manitoba
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinHenry Richard Woodley (father), 145 Ontario Street, Victoria, British Columbia
Trade / CallingPhotographer
ReligionChurch of England
Service Details
Regimental Number2601989
Service Record Link to Service Record
BattalionNo. 6 Company, Canadian Garrison Regiment
BranchCanadian Garrison Regiment
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Address at EnlistmentHillsdale Hotel, San Francisco, California
Date of EnlistmentApril 2, 1918
Age at Enlistment24
Theatre of ServiceCanada
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathAugust 31, 1954
Age at Death61

Woodley, Charles James

Gunner Charles James Woodley was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and living in California when the war started. He returned to Canada in 1918 and served for 15 months with the Canadian Garrison Regiment.

Charles was the oldest son of Henry Richard and Matilda Woodley of Victoria, British Columbia. He was born in Winnipeg on 12 June 1893. His parents were both from Ontario and they were married in Winnipeg in 1892. Shortly after Charles was born they moved to northwestern Ontario and settled in Rat Portage (now called Kenora). Three children were born there: Lorne Arnold (1895), Grace Emily (1896) and Henry Fred (1901). Around 1904 Henry and Matilda moved west to British Columbia. Their last child, Walter Clifton, was born in Vancouver in 1904 and by 1906 the family had settled in Victoria. Henry worked as a plumber and later as a stationary engineer.

Charles moved to California around 1914 and found work there as a photographer. When the war started his brother Lorne Arnold enlisted immediately and went overseas with the 1st Canadian Contingent. The Americans entered the war in April 1917 and Charles was drafted for service in the U.S. army. He returned to Canada instead and enlisted in the Canadian Garrison Regiment on 2 April 1918. He was attached to No. 6 Company, which was based in Halifax, and he served there until the summer of 1919.

After his discharge Charles returned to the U.S., crossing at Detroit, Michigan in July 1919 with his destination listed as Hollywood, California. That same month he was married in Los Angeles to Agnes Josephine Schurman. Agnes was five years younger than him and was born in Illinois, the daughter of Frank and Polly Schurman. Charles and his wife had one son, Henry Richard, born in September 1926. When the 1930 census was taken they were living on West Boulevard in Los Angeles and Charles was a commercial photographer. When he completed his WW2 draft card in April 1942 he was living on Mullen Avenue and working for Warner Bros. Studios.

Charles passed away in Los Angeles on 31 August 1954, at age 61. His brother Fred had also moved to Los Angeles. He worked as an aircraft mechanic and he died there in 1991, at age 90.

By Becky Johnson

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