Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthAugust 21, 1884
Place of BirthPollokshaws, Glasgow
Marital StatusMarried
Next of KinJeanie Reid, wife, Keewatin, Ontario
Trade / CallingMiller
Service Details
Regimental Number1038022
Service Record Link to Service Record
Battalion238th Battalion
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchCanadian Infantry
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Address at EnlistmentKeewatin, Ontario
Date of EnlistmentAugust 15, 1916
Age at Enlistment32
Theatre of ServiceGreat Britain
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathDecember 25, 1947
Age at Death63
Buried AtBrookside Cemetery, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Reid, Alexander McCready

Alexander McCready Reid was born on 21 August 1884 in the community of Pollokshaws in Glasgow, Scotland. His father James Reid, a joiner, was from Ayr, Ayrshire while his mother Margaret (Maggie) McConnachie Hendrie was from Bonhill in Dunbartonshire. The couple married on 2 June 1876 in Pollokshaws. Alexander had an older brother James and younger siblings Janet, Jessie and Robert. On 26 June 1908 in Dennistoun, Glasgow, Alexander married Jane (Jeanie) Wylie Cousland Shirra, daughter of Michael and Jessie (née Kelly) Shirra. At the time of the marriage Alexander was working as a flour miller and Jeanie as a thread winder. The couple gave birth to daughter Jessie the next year, followed by another daughter, Margaret (Peggie), in 1910. According to the 1921 Canada census, Alexander immigrated to Canada in 1911 followed by Jeanie and the girls in 1912. The family settled in Keewatin, Ontario where Alexander found work as a miller at the local flour mill. They gave birth to son John Shirra Rogers Reid in 1913 in Keewatin.

Alexander signed his attestation papers in nearby Kenora on 15 August 1916. His occupation was given as miller and his wife Jeanie in Keewatin as next of kin. The 238th Battalion was organized in May of 1916 and mobilized in Ottawa with recruitment depots in Toronto, Winnipeg, Sault Saint Marie, and Calgary. As a Private with the 238th Battalion, Alexander embarked from Halifax aboard the Scandinavian on 13 September 1916. Once in England the battalion amalgamated with the 224th Battalion on 9 October 1916 to form the Canadian Forestry Corps at Sunningdale in Berkshire, joined by the 230th and 242nd Battalions.

On 1 May 1917 Alexander was taken on strength with Company 10 of the 1st District Canadian Forestry Corps at Edinburgh. In late June he was admitted to the 3rd Scottish General Hospital in Stobhill, Glasgow, suffering from a preexisting condition, chronic otitis media, an inflammatory disease of the middle ear. He spent five weeks in the hospital and then returned to England. His vision was also defective and he had a faster than normal heart rate (tachycardia). It was decided that Alexander should return to Canada for further treatment, embarking from Liverpool aboard the Saxonia on 17 November 1917. Alexander spent eight weeks at the Manitoba Military Convalescent Hospital and was discharged as medically unfit for further service on 4 March 1918.

Alexander returned to Keewatin for a short while before moving to Winnipeg to work for the Western Canada Flour Mills. Four more children joined the family, Alexander, Robert, Cecilia, and William. Predeceased by his son Robert in 1937, Alexander died on 25 December 1947 at Deer Lodge Hospital, Winnipeg, Manitoba. His Veteran Death card listed his wife Jane W Reid of  Winnipeg as his next of kin. Jane died in October of 1959 in the Winnipeg General Hospital. At the time of her death she was survived by sons John, Alex, and William and daughters Jessie Collins, Peggie Hayton, and Cecilia Rogers. Alexander and Jane are interred in Brookside Cemetery, Winnipeg.

In August of 1919 the town of Keewatin held a demonstration where those who had served during the war were presented with medals and badges by the mayor, with Alexander’s name on the list. He is commemorated for his service during the war on the Lake of the Woods Milling Company plaque.

by Judy Stockham