|Date of Birth||January 13, 1896|
|Place of Birth||Udny, Aberdeenshire|
|Battalion||83rd and 84th Brigades|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Enlisted|
|Date of Enlistment||September 1914|
|Age at Enlistment||18|
|Theatre of Service||Europe|
|Date of Death||May 29, 1980|
|Age at Death||84|
|Buried At||Mountain View Cemetery, Thunder Bay, Ontario|
John Hardie Porter was born on 13 January 1896 in Udny, Aberdeenshire in Scotland. A small community, it is located about 20 kilometres north of Aberdeen. John’s father William Porter, a mason, was from Methlick while his mother Jessie Hardie was from Torphins, both within a 30 kilometre radius. The couple married on 7 July 1893 in nearby Tullynessle and Forbes. Children born to the family were John, William (1897), Robert (1899), George (1901), Jessie (1902), and Christina Margaret (Chrissie) (1906). Sadly, by the time of the 1911 census George has passed away. On the census John’s occupation was given as grocer shop assistant.
By most accounts John enlisted with the Royal Field Artillery in September of 1914, regimental number 70436. Although his service record was not found, according to his later Service Medals and Awards Roll, his British Army WW1 Medals Rolls Index Card, his application to the Kenora, Ontario Branch of the Canadian Legion, and his obituary, John arrived in France in late July of 1915. As a Gunner and later a Bombardier, he served first with the A Battery of the 83rd Brigade and then latterly with the D Battery of the 84th Brigade of the RFA, discharged from service in March of 1919.
John immigrated to Canada in 1920, arriving in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the Melita on March 28th. With occupation given as grocer on the passenger list, he was on his way to Carman, Manitoba where his uncle George Hardie was living. On 4 October 1923, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, John married Maria Flossie Adrian (aka Adrain). Born on 10 September 1895 in Winnipeg, Flossie was the daughter of Samuel Adrain and Lavina May. Her father from Ontario and her mother from England, her parents had married on 26 December 1881 in Carlow, Hastings in Ontario where they farmed. Moving to Winnipeg, Samuel died in 1908 and by the time of the 1916 census Flossie and her mother and a sister were living in Carman.
John and Flossie were to make northwestern Ontario their home. By the mid 1920’s they were living in Norman, a community a couple of kilometres west of Kenora, and a 1935 Voters list placed them in Fort Frances with John’s occupation given as manager on the list. By the 1940 Voters list they were living in Kenora where John was working as an agent. In 1943 he joined the Kenora Branch of the Canadian Legion, rank of Sergeant given on the application. In 1945 the family moved to Thunder Bay were John operated the Ace Tire and Battery Service in Fort William. Children born to the family were sons John Adrian (Jack) (1926-2016), Edmund William Hardie (1931-2003) and Alan (1934-2013), and daughter Joyce (abt 1928-1996). John was a former member and elder of Wesley, a member of the St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, a long time member of I.O.O.F. Algoma Lodge No 267, of the Golden Agers Club, and of St Andrew’s Friendship Club. John’s wife Flossie died on 13 June 1969 in Fort William, with John marrying the former Mary Dewar in 1971.
Following a lengthy illness, John died on 29 May 1980 in Thunder Bay. At the time of his death he was survived by his wife Mary, sons Jack (Gertrude) of Thunder Bay, Edmund (Bernice) of Terrace Bay, Alan (Lois) of Calgary, and daughter Joyce (Stan) Cranston of Thunder Bay as well as fourteen grandchildren and eight great grandchildren. He was also survived by his sister Jessie (Alexander) Paterson and brother Robert back in Scotland. John was predeceased by his father William in 1940 and mother Jessie in 1960, both in Udny. John is interred in Mountain View Cemetery in Thunder Bay.
By Judy Stockham
John’s obituaries were provided by the Thunder Bay Public Library.