Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthSeptember 24, 1897
Place of BirthRat Portage (Kenora), Ontario
Marital StatusSingle
Next of KinCatherine McKinnon, mother, RR1 Alexandria, Ontario
Trade / CallingFarmer
ReligionRoman Catholic
Service Details
Regimental Number3323534
Service RecordLink to Service Record
Battalion2nd Depot Battalion, Eastern Ontario Regiment
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedConscripted
Place of EnlistmentOttawa
Address at EnlistmentRR1 Alexandria, Ontario
Date of EnlistmentJune 5, 1918
Age at Enlistment20
Theatre of ServiceCanada
Death Details

McKinnon, John David

John David McKinnon was born on 24 September 1897 in Rat Portage (later renamed Kenora) in northwestern Ontario. His father Angus Hugh McKinnon was from the Lochiel area of Glengarry in Ontario while his mother Catherine Jane McRae was from Roxborough, Ontario. Although he had been living in Rat Portage and working as a general merchant, Angus and Catherine married on 19 August 1884 in St Andrews, Stormont, Ontario. The couple made Rat Portage their home, giving birth to children Mary Anne Josephine (1887-1887), Christopher Hugh (1889-1976), Annabel (1891-1988), Clementine (1893-1989), Donald Angus (1895-1980) and John. Sadly Mary died ten days after her birth.

According to Angus’ later obituary, in his early twenties he had left Glengarry for the northwest by way of the Great Lakes and from Port Arthur over the trail to Rainy River where he lived for a few years. From there he travelled across Lake of the Woods to Rat Portage where he and his brother William opened a general store where they furnished supplies for the various contractors working on the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway in the area. When the partnership was dissolved, Angus took on prospecting in the district. In 1906 the family moved back to the family farm in Lochiel.

Drafted under the Military Service Act of 1917, John was called up for service in June of 1918 at Ottawa. His occupation was given as farmer and his mother Catherine at RR1 Alexandria, Ontario as next of kin. He served in Canada as a Private with the 2nd Depot Battalion, Eastern Ontario Regiment and was discharged from service on demobilization on 12 December 1918 in Ottawa.

John’s brother Donald was also called up for service in June of 1918. Assigned as a Private with the 2nd Depot Battalion, Eastern Ontario Regiment, he was given a farm leave.

Little is known about John’s life after the war. At the time of his father’s death in 1932 he was living at home on the family farm. When his mother died in 1957 he was not mentioned in her obituary. John’s date, place of death, and final resting place are unknown.

By Judy Thorburn