Kenora Great War Project

 

Personal Details
Date of BirthDecember 21, 1881
Place of BirthMount Albert, Ontario
CountryCanada
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinWilliam W. Jones (brother), Prince Rupert, British Columbia
Trade / CallingGrain buyer
ReligionPresbyterian
Service Details
Regimental Number147698
Service Record Link to Service Record
Battalion78th Battalion
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Place of EnlistmentWinnipeg, Manitoba
Date of EnlistmentJuly 8, 1915
Age at Enlistment33
Theatre of ServiceEurope
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathAugust 1, 1941
Age at Death59
Buried AtMount Albert Cemetery, Mount Albert, Ontario

Jones, Walter Malcolm

Private Walter Malcolm Jones enlisted in Winnipeg in July 1915 and served in France with the 78th Battalion. He was wounded at the Vimy front in January 1917 and invalided back to Canada about a year later.

Walter was one of six sons of Anson Jones and Sarah Halliday Armstrong of Mount Albert, Ontario. Anson was a farmer, born in Ontario, and Sarah was from New Brunswick. Their sons were Benjamin, Albert, Edgar, William, Robert and Walter. Walter, the youngest, was born in Mount Albert on 21 December 1881. Some of the boys moved west and when the 1901 census was taken Walter was working as a clerk at Mine Centre in northwestern Ontario. By the time he enlisted in 1915 he was living in Manitoba.

Walter signed up in Winnipeg on 8 July 1915, joining the 78th Battalion (Winnipeg Grenadiers). His occupation was grain buyer and next of kin was his brother William in Prince Rupert, British Columbia. The recruits trained at Camp Sewell (later renamed Camp Hughes) during the summer and moved back to Winnipeg for the winter. They headed overseas in the spring, embarking from Halifax on the Empress of Britain on 20 May 1916 and arriving in Liverpool about nine days later. In August Walter went to France with the 78th Battalion and they became part of the 12th Brigade in the new 4th Canadian Division.

That fall the 4th Division was sent to the Somme, to relieve other Canadian units there, and when the offensive ended in November they moved north to the Len-Arras area, across from Vimy. On 30 December the 78th Battalion started a week long rotation in the front line. German artillery was very active on 3 January 1917 and Walter’s unit suffered 16 casualties that day, including five killed. Walter was one of the wounded with severe shrapnel wounds to his shoulder, chest and hip. He was taken to a casualty clearing station then moved to No. 11 General Hospital at Camiers on 9 January. Two weeks later he was evacuated to England on the hospital ship Newhaven. He spent almost three months at the Auxiliary Hospital Red House at Cromer, Norfolk, followed by a short time at the convalescent centre in Bearwood.

Walter was discharged to light duty and he served in England for the next eleven months with the Manitoba Regiment Depot, the 11th Reserve Battalion and the 1st Canadian Convalescent Depot. In May 1917 he had ten days leave and that summer he was a house orderly and hut orderly. In November he spent ten days at No. 11 General Hospital in Shorncliffe for his chest wound, possibly because there were pieces of shrapnel that could not be removed. A medical report recommended that he be invalided to Canada and he embarked in early March 1917 on the Orpington, arriving in Halifax. He was attached to the casualty company in Winnipeg on 21 March and officially discharged on 17 April, due to being medically unfit for further war service. He was entitled to wear one gold (casualty) stripe.

After his service Walter lived in Fort Frances, Ontario for several years before returning to Winnipeg. His job also took him to Kenora and he stayed at the Lake of the Woods Hotel and joined the Kenora branch of the Canadian Legion in 1936. Walter passed away on 1 August 1941 at Hilly Lake, which is just east of Kenora. His brother Albert in Owen Sound, Ontario looked after the funeral arrangements. Walter is buried at Mount Albert Cemetery in Mount Albert, Ontario, along with his parents and his oldest brother Benjamin.

By Becky Johnson

Photos of the family grave markers at Mount Albert Cemetery are on Find A Grave.


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