|Date of Birth||August 10, 1886|
|Place of Birth||Г„skja, UllГҐnger, Västernorrland|
|Next of Kin||Lisa Haglund, mother, Г„skja, UllГҐnger, Sweden|
|Trade / Calling||Labourer|
|Service Record||Link to Service Record|
|Force||Canadian Expeditionary Force|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Enlisted|
|Place of Enlistment||Winnipeg, Manitoba|
|Address at Enlistment||268 King Street, Winnipeg, Manitoba|
|Date of Enlistment||February 18, 1916|
|Age at Enlistment||29|
|Theatre of Service||Canada|
|Prisoner of War||No|
|Date of Death||April 25, 1980|
|Age at Death||94|
|Buried At||Lake of the Woods Cemetery, Kenora, Ontario|
Otto Hägglund (anglicized to Haglund once in Canada) was born on 10 August 1886 in Г„skja, UllГҐnger in Västernorrland, Sweden. His parents were Johan Häglund and Elizabet (Lisa) Dahlström who had married on 5 November 1865 in the parish of Г„skja. Otto had a number of older siblings, Johan (1866), Katarina (1968), Petrus (1870-1880), Margaretha (1872), Lisa Johanna (1875), Marta Stina (1878), and Petrus Bernhard (1881). Otto’s father was a topare (crofter).
It appears that Otto was the only member of the family to immigrate to Canada. He left Göteburg aboard the Eldorado on 22 February 1911 on the first stage of his journey, and then embarked from Liverpool aboard the Lake Champlain that arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick on March 13, destination given as Fort William, Ontario.
Otto was living in Winnipeg, Manitoba when he signed his attestation papers on 18 February 1916 with the 197th Battalion. His occupation was given as labourer and his mother Lisa back in Sweden as next of kin. With blue eyes and fair hair, Otto was 29 years old. However, training did not go well for Otto as he had ‘cardiac trouble and flat feet’. Dating back to childhood and a rheumatic condition, he had a mitral regurgitation murmur (leaky heart valve), a slightly enlarged heart, and his left plantar arch was weak. With conduct given as good, rank given as Private, Otto was found medically unfit for service and discharged in Winnipeg on 14 December 1916.
Otto was to make northwestern Ontario his home, living in a number of towns and working self-employed as a carpenter. While living in Norman, a village on the outskirts of Kenora, Otto joined the Kenora Branch of the Canadian Legion, likely in the early 1950’s as indicated by a Voters List of the day. On 1 December 1957 Otto was admitted to the Pinecrest Home for the Aged in Kenora.
Predeceased by his father Johan in 1906, his mother Lisa in 1925, and all of his siblings, Otto died on 25 April 1980 at Pinecrest. He is interred in the Lake of the Woods Cemetery in Kenora. ‘During his 22 year residency at Pinecrest Otto made many friends among the residents and staff. He will be sadly missed by Mr Hughes and his staff.’ (Kenora Miner and News)
by Judy Stockham
Otto’s grave marker was installed in the Lake of the Woods Cemetery in 2018 by the Last Post Fund.