|Date of Birth||January 26, 1901|
|Place of Birth||Kenora, Ontario|
|Next of Kin||Alfred Goulet (father), 32 Victoria Street, St. Boniface, Manitoba|
|Trade / Calling||Salesman|
|Service Record||Link to Service Record|
|Battalion||10 Battalion, Canadian Garrison Regiment|
|Force||Canadian Expeditionary Force|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Enlisted|
|Address at Enlistment||32 Victoria Street, St. Boniface, Manitoba|
|Date of Enlistment||April 10, 1916|
|Age at Enlistment||15|
|Theatre of Service||Europe|
|Prisoner of War||No|
|Date of Death||August 14, 1964|
|Age at Death||63|
|Buried At||Mountain View Cemetery, Vancouver|
Private Albert Jules Goulet enlisted at age 15 and spent a few months in France with the 8th Battalion. He was sent back to Canada due to being a minor and he served for another four months on guard duty.
Jules was the grandson of Elzéar Goulet and Hélène Jerome of the Red River Settlement in Manitoba. During the 1860s Elzéar was the mail carrier between Red River and Pembina in Dakota Territory. He and his wife had six children including Jules’ father Alfred, who was born in Pembina in 1859. The family moved from Pembina to the Red River Settlement around 1869, when Alfred was ten years old. During the Resistance Elzéar became a member of the Métis armed force and a follower of Louis Riel. He drowned in the Red River in September 1870, while being pursued by soldiers from the Wolseley expedition.
Alfred and his three brothers all moved to Rat Portage in northwestern Ontario. At the time of the 1891 census Alfred was married and working as a miner. He and his wife, Suzanne Carrier, had at least six sons and one daughter: Albert, Alexander, Walter, Arthur, Moise, Marie and Albert Jules. Jules, the youngest, was born in Rat Portage (later called Kenora) on 26 January 1901. By 1906 the family had moved to St. Boniface and in the 1911 census Alfred was listed as a federal land officer.
The war started in August 1914 and Jules enlisted in the spring of 1916, passing himself off as 17 years old. He signed up in Winnipeg on 10 April and joined the 203rd Battalion. The 203rd was a temperance unit that called themselves the ‘Hard and Dry Battalion.’ It had been organized in Winnipeg and was being recruited in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. From the Brandon Daily Sun, 29 April 1916, ‘The 203rd has met with remarkable success since its organization last February and is one of the most popular battalions in Military District No. 10. Great emphasis is placed upon sport and it is the aim of the Commanding Officer and all those under him to give the men every opportunity to develop the best that is within them.’ By May the unit was affiliated with the 90th Winnipeg Rifles and was being called the 203rd Overseas Battalion Winnipeg Rifles.
Over the summer and fall the men trained with other units at Camp Hughes, just east of Brandon. In late October the battalion headed overseas, embarking from Halifax on the SS Grampian and landing at Liverpool on 4 November. A letter from the commanding officer dated 14 November said the men had settled into their quarters at Bramshott Camp and training was well underway. In January 1917 the unit was absorbed by the 18th Reserve Battalion and four months later Jules was drafted to a front line unit, the 8th Battalion (90th Winnipeg Rifles), and sent to France. When he joined the battalion in the field in the last week of May they were at Haillicourt, near Lens. In April the unit had fought at Vimy Ridge and Arleux and Jules arrived in a draft of 95 reinforcements.
In early June the 8th Battalion moved to Mount St. Eloi, across from Vimy. Over the next six weeks they had several rotations in the front line and they also rested, trained and provided men for work parties. In mid-July the troops moved to a new location but Jules didn’t get to go with them. The authorities had learned his correct age and he was sent instead to the Canadian Base Depot in Etaples. On 17 August he returned to England, where he was assigned to the Manitoba Regiment Depot at Shorncliffe. Two months later he was on his way to Canada, embarking from Liverpool on 18 October. He was back in Winnipeg on 5 November. He was discharged on 29 December, due to being a minor and with the provision that he could re-enlist for service in Canada.
Jules enlisted again on 18 January 1918 and he was assigned to guard duty with the 10th Special Service Company. In April the company was absorbed by the 10th Battalion, Canadian Garrison Regiment. On 20 April Jules became ill with influenza and he spent a week in the hospital. He was discharged in Winnipeg on 23 May, listed as medically unfit for further service. He had grown 2-1/2′ and gained 25 lb. during his two years in the army. His cousin Raymond Goulet also enlisted and he served for a year in the UK.
Not long after his discharge Jules headed to Saskatchewan and got married. He and his wife, Fannie Jacobs, had a son Harold Jules Goulet, born in Saskatchewan in 1919. In the mid-1920s Jules moved to Vancouver. His son served in the Second World War with the Canadian army and Air Force. Around that same time Jules started working as an orderly at Vancouver General Hospital. He retired in 1959 and passed away in Vancouver General Hospital on 14 August 1964, at age 63. He’s buried in Mountain View Cemetery in Vancouver. His wife had predeceased him and his son Harold died in Shaunessy Veterans Hospital in Vancouver in 1978.
By Becky Johnson
Grave marker photo courtesy of Lorraine Speers on findagrave.com.