Kenora Great War Project

 

Personal Details
Date of BirthSeptember 21, 1880
Place of BirthAlexandria, Glengarry County, Ontario
CountryCanada
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinMrs. Duncan Cameron (mother), Alexandria, Ontario
Trade / CallingCarpenter/millwright
ReligionRoman Catholic
Service Details
Regimental Number199059
Service Record Link to Service Record
Battalion16th Battalion
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Place of EnlistmentKenora, Ontario
Address at EnlistmentKenora, Ontario
Date of EnlistmentMarch 2, 1916
Age at Enlistment35
Theatre of ServiceEurope
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathNovember 8, 1962
Age at Death82
Buried AtSt. Francis Xavier Roman Catholic Cemetery, Brockville, Ontario
PlotRow 3, #344

Cameron, Ronald

Private Ronald Cameron enlisted in Kenora, Ontario in March 1916. He was wounded at the Somme that fall while serving with the 16th Battalion, and he was invalided back to Canada in March 1917.

Ronald (aka Ranald) was born on 21 September 1880 in Alexandria, Lochiel Township, Glengarry County, Ontario. His parents, Duncan Cameron and Rachel McKinnon, were both born in Ontario, known as Upper Canada at the time. They were married in Alexandria in 1861 and they had at least ten children: Catherine, John, Malcolm, Duncan, Mary, Hugh, Dugald, Ronald, Flora and Angus. Ronald’s father was a farmer and he died in 1898, at age 69. When the 1901 census was taken Ronald was living in Lochiel Township with his brother John, who was also a farmer. By the time of the 1911 census Ronald and his brother Dugald had moved to the Kenora area in northwestern Ontario, where they were working at a saw mill.

The war started in August 1914 and Ronald enlisted in Kenora on 2 March 1916. He signed up with the 94th Overseas Battalion, which was being recruited in towns throughout northwestern Ontario. He was living in Kenora at the time and working as a carpenter and millwright. The 94th was based in Port Arthur and the Kenora recruits were sent there in May to join the rest of the unit. They left for Quebec on 9 June and spent a short time at the large military camp in Valcartier, north of Quebec City. The battalion embarked for England on the SS Olympic at the end of the month, arriving in Liverpool on 6 July.

On 13 July Ronald was assigned to the 17th Reserve Battalion. Six weeks later, on 27 August, he was transferred to the 16th (Canadian Scottish) Battalion and sent to France. He joined his new unit in the field in late September, during the Battle of the Somme. On 8 October the 16th Battalion took part in an unsuccessful attack on Regina Trench, suffering heavy casualties. Ronald was wounded that day when a bullet or shell fragment fractured some bones in his left hand. He was sent to No. 13 General Hospital in Boulogne on 9 October and evacuated to England the next day. He spent two months at an Auxiliary Hospital in Tranmere followed by two months at the Convalescent Centre in Epsom. He was discharged on 16 February 1917 and transferred to the Canadian Casualty Assembly Centre. Ronald’s injury caused permanent damage to his hand and he was no longer fit for military service. He was invalided to Canada that spring, sailing from Liverpool on the RMS Metagama and arriving in St. John on 16 March. He had a medical exam in Quebec on 19 March, which confirmed he was unfit for further service. He was discharged on 30 April in Kingston, Ontario with his intended address listed as Alexandria.

Ronald was married on 14 July 1924 to 21-year-old Ruth Kilby of Toronto. He was living in North Bay at the time, working as a carpenter, and they were married in Toronto. Ruth was born in 1903 in Renfrew County, Ontario, the daughter of Charles and Margaret Kilby. Ronald had a long career as a carpenter and he and his wife settled in Brockville, Ontario, where they lived for more than forty years. They had seven children: Williard, Beatrice, Neil, John, Charles, Margaret and Cora Lee. Ronald passed away on 8 November 1962, at age 82, and Ruth died six years later. They are both buried in St. Francis Xavier Roman Catholic Cemetery in Brockville.

By Becky Johnson

Bush-William-Jabez-91 94th-1916-05-27a Cameron-Ronald-90


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