Kenora Great War Project


Personal Details
Date of BirthMay 7, 1890
Place of BirthNorman, Ontario
Marital StatusSingle
Trade / CallingSteamfitter
Service Details
ForceCanadian Expeditionary Force
BranchSoldier Biographies
Enlisted / ConscriptedEnlisted
Date of Enlistment1917
Age at Enlistment27
Theatre of ServiceCanada
Prisoner of WarNo
Survived WarYes
Death Details
Date of DeathNovember 21, 1958
Age at Death68

Healey, William Henry

William Henry Healey was the son of William and Mary Healey of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. William Sr., a blacksmith, was born in Ontario and his wife in Wisconsin. They had at least four children: Nettie, Maud, William Henry and Pearl. William was born on 7 May 1890 in the village of Norman, Ontario, which is now part of the city of Kenora. William’s older sisters were born in Canada but the family moved to Milwaukee around 1891 and Pearl was born in Wisconsin in 1895.

At the time of the 1910 U.S. census William was 19, living at home and working as a steamfitter. The U.S. entered the war in April 1917 and he completed his draft registration card on 5 June. He was living in Milwaukee, employed as a steamfitter, single and 27 years old with his birth listed as 7 May 1890 in Norman, Ontario. He was described as slender with blue eyes and dark brown hair. William apparently returned to Canada to enlist as recorded on a register of U.S. citizens serving in the Canadian Expeditionary Force. The register states that he was of Canadian nationality, born in 1890, employed as a steamfitter and he went to Winnipeg, Manitoba to enlist in August 1917. An attestation paper or service file for William has not been found.

William was married in Madoc, Ontario on 18 March 1918. His occupation was soldier and his residence at the time was Toronto. His wife, Marie Lillian Howard, was born in Belleville, Ontario in 1897, the daughter of Thomas Alfred Howard, a farmer, and Florence McCaffrey. By the time of the 1921 census William and Marie had two children, William (age 3) and Gordon Henry (born in July 1920 in Toronto). William was living and working in Toronto and the two kids were staying with their grandparents, Thomas and Florence Howard, in Wolford Township, Ontario. Thomas and his wife also had eight children of their own at home, between the ages of 8 months and 18 years.

Sometime after that William and Marie returned to the U.S. and settled in Detroit, Michigan. They had at last three more children: Mary Margaret (1925), Lorraine Maude (1928) and John James (1933). Marie’s parents also moved to Detroit and her mother died in 1930 followed by her father in 1936. During the Second World War Gordon enlisted in the U.S. army and served from 1942 to 1947. Online Healey family trees record William’s death as 21 November 1958 in Dearborn, Michigan. Marie died in Wayne County, Michigan in July 1973, at age 76.

By Becky Johnson

Photo courtesy of Healey public family tree on

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