|Date of Birth||February 20, 1881|
|Place of Birth||St Tite, Quebec|
|Next of Kin||Mrs Ellen Beaudoin, wife, Kenora, Ontario|
|Trade / Calling||Blacksmith|
|Service Record||Link to Service Record|
|Battalion||No. 1 Tramways Company|
|Force||Canadian Expeditionary Force|
|Branch||Canadian Railway Troops|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Enlisted|
|Address at Enlistment||Kenora, Ontario|
|Date of Enlistment||February 20, 1916|
|Age at Enlistment||35|
|Theatre of Service||Europe|
|Prisoner of War||No|
|Date of Death||August 11, 1969|
|Age at Death||88|
|Buried At||St. Patrick's Cemetery, Thunder Bay, Ontario|
George Beaudoin was born 20 February 1881 in St. Tite, Quebec (a village north of Trois Rivieres). His parents were Prosper Beaudoin and Rosa Ann Thiffault. Siblings included Napoleon (b. 1870), Noemie (b. 1874), Emma (b. 1875), Josephat (b. 1886), Marie Louise (b. 1888), Bernadette (b. 1889) and Jean Baptiste ((b. 1895).
George spent his first 20 years in Quebec but moved to Rat Portage (Kenora), Ontario by 1904 when he married Helen (Ellen) Harrison. She was the daughter of Damase Harrison and Helene Jerome who were living at North West Angle on Lake of the Woods. In the 1911 census George and Helen were found living in Kenora and George was working as a labourer at the Maple Leaf Flour Mill.
George enlisted with the 94th Battalion in Kenora on 20 March 1916 listing his occupation as ‘blacksmith’. After a short period of training in Port Arthur his battalion embarked for England on 28 June 1916. When he arrived in Liverpool George was transferred to the 32nd Reserve Battalion until September. At this point he joined the 5th Battalion and was sent to France, arriving at his unit in the field on 08 October 1916. He served with them for a year during which time he spent two weeks in a rest camp and 10 days on leave to Paris.
In October of 1917 George was transferred to the Canadian Light Railway Company which became known as the 1st Tramways Company of the Canadian Engineers in January of 1918. These companies built, maintained and operated light railways in forward areas. The gauge used was 60- centimetre and the cars were interchangeable with the Army Light Railway System. The trains were powered with petrol because they operated beyond the point where it was considered safe to use steam power. Tramways carried ammunition to artillery batteries, engineering supplies, troops, rations, gas and other comparatively light loads. They also ran hospital trains to carry the wounded to field ambulance stations. In October of 1918 George was promoted to the rank of Corporal. He returned to England on 20 February 1919 and then sailed back to Canada. George’s official discharge due to demobilization came on 08 April 1919.
George and Helen settled in Fort William after the war where George worked as a blacksmith. They had no children. Ellen (Helen) died on 08 January 1953 and was buried in St. Patrick’s Cemetery. In 1955 George married the former Helen Hewitt, with Helen passing away in 1957. George Beaudoin passed away on 11 August 1969 in Fort William and is interred with his wife in St. Patrick’s Cemetery.
Headstone photo courtesy of Linda Piilo
Obituaries courtesy of the Thunder Bay Public Library