|Date of Birth||October 29, 1889|
|Place of Birth||Keewatin, Ontario|
|Next of Kin||Samuel Lacasse, father, Keewatin, Ontario|
|Trade / Calling||Labourer|
|Service Record||Link to Service Record|
|Force||Canadian Expeditionary Force|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Enlisted|
|Place of Enlistment||Fort Frances, Ontario|
|Address at Enlistment||Keewatin, Ontario|
|Date of Enlistment||May 29, 1915|
|Age at Enlistment||26|
|Theatre of Service||Canada|
Charles was a younger son of Anselme (more commonly known as Samuel) and Wilhemina Melina (née Desmarais) Lacasse, parents being French Canadian, originally from the Ottawa/Gatineau area. Samuel and Melina married on 27 April 1885 in Rat Portage (later renamed Kenora), Melina’s family having moved to the area to open a saw mill. At some point Melina and perhaps Samuel went back to Gatineau Pointe, as their first two children, twins Joseph and Napoleon, were born there on 28 February 1886. Returning after the births, subsequent children born in Keewatin were Oscar, William, Charles, Bertha, and Eugene. For the 1891 census the family was living in Keewatin South, father Samuel’s occupation given as mill labourer. Living next door were Melina’s birth family, father Eusebe Desmarais, his second wife, and children from both marriages. In 1901 the family was still in Keewatin but by then his father’s occupation had changed to farmer. For the 1911 census Charles’ parents and Charles and two of his siblings, Bertha and Eugene, were living on River Street in Keewatin.
Charles enlisted with the 52nd Battalion in Fort Frances, Ontario on 29 May 1915. His occupation was given as labourer and his father Samuel back in Keewatin as next of kin. As of June 19th he was reported as AWOL and then classified as a deserter on July 7th.
Charles’ brothers William and Oscar served during World War 1. William went overseas with the 141st battalion, later transferring to the 44th Battalion. He was reported as killed in action on 28 April 1918. Oscar went overseas with the 94th Battalion, later transferring to the 5th Battalion. He was reported as killed in action on 1 September 1918.
By 1921 Charles’ parents and siblings Bertha and Eugene were living in Vancouver, moving south of the border to Washington later that year. His father Samuel died on 6 July 1927 and his mother Melina on 16 December 1949. Both are interred in Union Cemetery in Sedro-Woolly, Washington. Charles whereabouts after desertion are unknown. It is unlikely that any of the family remained in the Kenora/Keewatin area.
by Judy Stockham