Cantley 1889 Articles

Echo Cantley Echo

The following article first appeared in The Echo of Cantley Volume 29 no 5, November 2017. This article is made available for the enjoyment of others with the express permission of the Echo of Cantley.

Honour our Veterans on Remembrance Day

By Mary Holmes and Margaret Phillips with help from Gatineau Valley Historical Society president Marc Cockburn

It is shameful that Cantley has no war memorial, cenotaph or even a plaque recognizing the men and women of Cantley who fought for our country and world peace. Cantley’s veterans were not honoured or even acknowledged on Remembrance Day, until 2011 when Mary Holmes began writing her outstanding November articles for the Echo.

Cantley 1889 is proud to announce that on Remembrance Day 2017, Cantley will place a wreath with the words: Vétérans de Cantley Veterans. Everyone is invited to the ceremony that will take place at 10:30 am at the Chelsea Pioneer Cemetery. (587 Highway 105, Chelsea QC)

The Chelsea Pioneer Cemetery is an appropriate place to honour our veterans since Cantley and Chelsea share many of the same family roots. Many of the area’s original settlers are buried here.

Private Richard Rowland Thompson, the only Canadian recipient of the Queen’s Scarf, buried in Chelsea Pioneer Cemetery (courtesy Gatineau Valley Historical Society).

The annual ceremony at the Chelsea Pioneer Cemetery is unique. Here, in 1986, the Gatineau Valley Historical Society (GVHS) discovered the grave of Private Richard Rowland Thompson. In 1899, Private Thompson enlisted with the 2nd Special Service Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment as a soldier in the South African War. He risked his own life to save the lives of comrades under intense fi re on at least two occasions. For his heroism, he received the Queen’s Scarf. Queen Victoria herself crocheted eight scarves to be presented for extreme gallantry to regular soldiers. Private Thompson was the only Canadian to receive this honour.

The Queen’s Scarf, one of only eight, crocheted by Queen Victoria herself and awarded to regular soldiers for extreme gallantry (courtesy Gatineau Valley Historical Society).

Though his funeral was conducted with full military honours, Thompson’s deeds and grave were forgotten for fifty years until the GVHS acquired and restored the cemetery and erected a cairn in his memory. The Thompson family installed stone pillars at the cemetery entrance and also donated his Queen’s Scarf to the people of Canada, now displayed at the Canadian War Museum.

For the past thirty years on November 11, GVHS has invited Private Thompson’s Royal Canadian Regiment, the Canadian Forces Health Services and the people of the Chelsea area to gather together at Private Thompson’s cairn for their Remembrance Day ceremony. This year, Cantley is included.

Thank you to GVHS who organizes this very special ceremony annually and has enthusiastically welcomed Cantley’s participation. We hope many Cantley people, young and old, will attend this year to honour our Cantley veterans at last.

Cantley Area Veterans

World War I (1914-1918) *indicates ‘killed in action’

Joseph A. Blanchfield
James E. Blanchfield
Patrick Fleming
Robert A.B. Brown
Edward J. Burke
Charles Dacey
Tommy P. Dacey
Patrick A. Egan
Delmer Foley
Charles B. Prudhomme
Lemuel H. Wilson
Harvey E. Wilson
Gordon L. Wilson
Richmond Storey
J. Oliver Easy
H. Osler Easy
Georges Cleary
J. Martin Holmes
William J. Kyle
James P. Kyle
Joseph R. Kyle
W. Edward Mulcahey
Michael Tempeny
Charles B. Wilson
Allan S. Farmer *
Michael J. Maloney

World War II (1939-1945) *indicates ‘killed in action’

Lesley Ashby
Aldège Bertrand
Bernie Brown
L. Brown
Neville Brown
Vernon Brown
George Barton
Norman Barton
Donald Cashman
Mervyn Cashman
Patrick Cashman
Victor Cashman
William Cashman
Arthur Chretien
Douglas Clarke
Harold Clarke
Willard Clarke
Donald Connor *
George Cooper
Clarence Derouin
Baptiste Dubois
Edmond Easey
W. Easey
Albert Floyd *
Thomas Floyd
James Fuller
Clément Gauthier
Edgar Gauthier
Gaston Gauthier
Hector Gauthier
Maurice Gauthier
Rhéal Gauthier
Ernest Goebel
Edward Hogan
Everett Hogan
Bernard Holmes
Charles Holmes
Cletus Holmes *
Lawrence Holmes
Martin Holmes
Philibert Lepage
Lawrence McGarry *
K. McGlashan
Max Morran
Frank O’Hara
William O’Hara
André Poulin
Fred Sargeant
Eldon Storey *
James Smith
Gwen Thompson
Hazel Thompson
H. Thompson
Maynard Thompson
Jan Turko, Pologne

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