|Date of Birth||March 27, 1896|
|Place of Birth||Worchester, Worcestershire|
|Next of Kin||father, Walter Rushton of Keewatin, Ontario|
|Trade / Calling||Miller|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Service Record||Link to Service Record|
|Force||Canadian Expeditionary Force|
|Branch||Canadian Field Artillery|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Enlisted|
|Address at Enlistment||Keewatin, Ontario|
|Date of Enlistment||May 21, 1917|
|Age at Enlistment||21|
|Theatre of Service||Europe|
|Prisoner of War||No|
|Date of Death||April 8, 1959|
|Age at Death||63|
|Buried At||Lake of the Woods Cemetery, Kenora, Ontario|
Percival Frank Rushton was born on 27 March 1896 in Worcester, Worcestershire, England. His father Walter and mother Letitia (née Booth) Rushton had married in Worcester in 1894. While in England Walter’s occupation on the censuses was given as ‘China Printer Earth’. There were four children in the Rushton family, Ernest (b 1895), Percy Frank (b 1896), Horace Walter (b 1897) and Violet May (b 1901).
Walter Rushton immigrated to Canada in February of 1903 and found employment with the Lake of the Woods Milling Company in Keewatin, Ontario. Letitia and the children arrived in May of 1904 aboard the Ionion and by the 1911 census the family was living on Goat Road in Keewatin. Walter was listed as working as a packer at the mill, Ernest’s occupation was given as printer and Percy was working at the Box Factory.
Although living in Keewatin, Percy and his brother Horace enlisted in Winnipeg on 21 May 1917, occupation for both given as miller. With the 76th Battery, Canadian Field Artillery, the brothers were sent to training camp in Petawawa by the end of the month. The 76th Overseas Depot Battery was organized in July of 1916 and served as an artillery reinforcement depot for Military District No 10 (Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario). As needed, drafts of men were sent to the UK. Percy and Horace embarked from St John, New Brunswick on 19 December 1917 aboard the Missanabie, arriving in Glasgow on the 31st.
Once overseas, after spending time at the Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp in the Artillery Pool in April of 1918, Driver Percy Rushton, along with Horace, was attached to the 43rd Battery. On 1 September 1918 he was admitted to the No 53 General Hospital in Boulogne with a gunshot wound to the left shoulder and then transferred a few days later to the Herne Bay Military Hospital in Kent, England. In November of 1918 Percy was transferred to the Military Convalescent Hospital in Epsom and by January of 1919, he was on his way back to Canada.
On 7 November 1926 Percy married Annie Didyk, both residents of Keewatin. The couple went on to have five children, Frank, Phyllis, Doris, Grace, and Mildred. Percy continued to work at the Lake of the Woods Milling Company, retiring in 1929 due to ill health. He was an honourary member of the Retired Mens Association, a member of the Keewatin Branch of the Canadian Legion, and the United Church.
Predeceased by his mother Letitia in 1929, his father Walter in 1939, his brother Horace in 1953, all in Kenora, and brother Ernest in 1954 in Vancouver, Percy died on 8 April 1959 in Deer Lodge Hospital in Winnipeg. He is interred in the Lake of the Woods Cemetery, Kenora. Percy’s wife Annie died in 1977 and is also interred in the family plot.
Along with his brothers Ernest and Horace, Percy’s name is found on the Keewatin St James Anglican Church WW1 Roll of Honour as a member of the church who had enlisted. Percy and Horace were honoured at a demonstration held by the municipality of Keewatin in August of 1919 and both of their names appear on the Lake of the Woods Milling Company Roll of Honour, the Municipality of Keewatin for King and Country plaque, and on the Town of Keewatin Roll of Honour.
by Judy Stockham