Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthJune 2, 1895
Place of BirthRat Portage (Kenora), Ontario
Marital StatusSingle
Trade / CallingStudent
ReligionChristian Scientist
Service Details
Regimental Number2843
Service Record Link to Service Record
Battalion1st Divisional Supply Column
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Army Service Corps
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Address at EnlistmentUniversity of Toronto
Date of EnlistmentApril 7, 1915
Age at Enlistment19
Theatre of ServiceEurope
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarNo
Death Details
Date of DeathJuly 28, 1917
Age at Death22
Buried AtSt. Hilaire Cemetery, Frevent, France
PlotIII. A. 22.

Deacon, Lester Jerome

Lester Deacon was born in 1895 in Rat Portage, now Kenora.

His father Thomas Russ Deacon, a civil engineer, had moved there in 1892 as manager of the Ontario Gold Concessions and was also managing director for the Mikado Gold Mine. Thomas Deacon was a member of the town council and served as town engineer.

In 1902 the family, which now included daughter Edith (born in 1900) and son Alfred (1902) moved to Winnipeg where Thomas Deacon co-founded the Manitoba Bridge and Iron Works. A fourth child, Ronald, was born there in 1907.

Lester Deacon remained a frequent summer visitor to Kenora after the move and was well known as a local baseball player.

In 1913 Thomas Deacon was elected mayor of Winnipeg on a platform promoting the use of Shoal Lake, Ontario, as the city’s water source. He was re-elected in 1914.

Lester Deacon attended Wesley College (now the University of Winnipeg) and in 1914 enrolled in the University of Toronto, his father’s alma mater.

Lester Jerome Deacon volunteered for service with the Canadian Expeditionary Force in the spring of 1915 and was assigned to the 26th Battery of Artillery. He was transferred to the 13th Battery for overseas duty in May 1915. His name appeared on a casualty list that month and he was shortly after transferred to the ammunition supply service.

He arrived in France in September of 1915 where he served as an ammunition driver during the Ypres campaign. In the spring of 1916 he was promoted to Lieutenant and, after a training course in England, was transferred to the 1st Divisional Supply Column. Deacon was involved in the Canadian Corps operations at Vimy and Messines. He was later transferred to the 5th Calvary Divisional Supply Column.

Lester suffered an appendicitis attack on July 16, 1917 while en route to England for leave. He was rushed to hospital for surgery, but died of complications on July 28.

Lester Deacon is buried at the St. Hilaire Cemetery, Frevent, France. He is commemorated on the Next of Kin Monument in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

by Bob Stewart

photographs of Lester: University of Toronto



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