Kenora Great War Project

 

Personal Details
Date of BirthJuly 16, 1896
Place of BirthFalkirk, Stirlingshire
CountryScotland
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinMrs Jane Sweeney, mother, 115 Pacific Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Trade / CallingTeamster
ReligionRoman Catholic
Service Details
Regimental Number288214
Service Record Link to Service Record
Battalion43rd Battalion
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Place of EnlistmentWinnipeg, Manitoba
Address at Enlistment115 Pacific Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Date of EnlistmentMarch 28, 1916
Age at Enlistment19
Theatre of ServiceEurope
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathSeptember 21, 1963
Age at Death67
Buried AtChapel Lawn Memorial Gardens, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Sweeney, Thomas

Thomas (Tom) Sweeney was born on 16 July 1896 in Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland, date confirmed by his birth record. Both of his parents Thomas Sweeney and Jane Doughty were born in Ireland, Thomas in Donegal and Jane in Meath. The couple married on 24 January 1892 in Falkirk where Thomas Sr was working as a furnaceman and Jane as a dressmaker. Tom had two older sisters, Mary Jane (1892-1893) and Catherine (Kate) and six younger siblings, Jane (Jennie), Maria, Edward, Annie (1906-1907), James (1909-1916), and George, the last two born in Canada. Thomas, Jane and the children immigrated to Canada in 1907, arriving in Montreal aboard the Cassandra on May 15th on their way to Winnipeg where they were to make their home. Thomas Sr first worked as a house building labourer and then later as storekeeper for the Canadian National Railway.

With occupation given as teamster and his mother Jane as next of kin, Tom signed his attestation papers in Winnipeg on 28 March 1916. He gave his birth date as 12 July 1895. While training in Manitoba with the 221st Battalion Tom was hospitalized in Winnipeg for a couple of weeks in August of 1916 suffering from influenza. Drummer Thomas Sweeney embarked from Canada on 18 April 1917, the 221st Battalion sailing on the Ausonia and the Scandinavian. Once in England Tom was transferred to the 11th Reserve Battalion as a Private and then on to the 43rd Battalion (Cameron Highlanders) in France in March of 1918. In early October Tom was sent on course and appointed Lance Corporal, returning at the end of the month. In late December he was granted a two week leave to the UK, rejoining the unit on the 14th of January 1919 where a few days later he was promoted to Corporal. In February Tom returned to England and embarked for Canada aboard the Baltic on the 12 March 1919.

After the war Tom returned to Winnipeg. On 20 March 1920 he married Isabel Johnson and then later married Amy Margaret Ezart on 17 November 1926, both in Winnipeg. It appears that neither marriage survived. Census and Voters lists confirm that Tom worked as as chauffeur, musician, and messman and lived for a time in Kenora, Ontario with his brother George where they both joined the Kenora Branch of the Canadian Legion, George having served during WW2. During WW2 Tom served with the Veterans Guard of Canada. Over the years Tom and his brothers Edward and George were all known/photographed as musicians.

Predeceased by his father Thomas in 1940, his mother Jane in 1945, both in Winnipeg, Tom died on 21 September 1963 in Deer Lodge Hospital in Winnipeg. At the time he was survived by his sisters Jean Wilson and Marie Lear of Winnipeg. His brother George had died that March. Tom is interred in the Chapel Lawn Cemetery in Winnipeg.

by Judy Stockham

Sweeney-Thomas-3 Sweeney-Thomas-5 Sweeney-Thomas-6 Sweeney-Thomas-2 Sweeney-Thomas-7

Tom’s photograph, family photographs, and grave marker photograph provided by of Judy Quinn
obituary from the Winnipeg Free Press, 24 September 1963


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