WED., Nov. 11th/ 09

TODAY:

-Remembrance Day Service at 10:45 at Aylmer Cenotaph

EESS hosts Girls’ Basketball playoffs: 3:30 Senior, 5 pm Junior

-“10,000 Villages” Sale continues at Old Town Hall auditorium

REMEMBRANCE DAY AYLMER, 2009: “Cenotaph Ghosts Have Interesting Stories”

WHAT follows is some information I have gathered about the men listed on Aylmer’s Cenotaph who died in World War I – using James McCallum’s book on East Elgin in WWI.

Of those positively identified who perished, 10 were ages 18-20; 18 were 20-24; 12 were 25-29 and 11 were over 30 years of age – one being 36, one 37, and Thomas Light of Port Burwell, single and a tinsmith, was 39. As well, Louis Raymond was a married man who enlisted at age 44 and died of wounds several years after the war when he was 53!

Three were 18 years old – Orlo Ballah, Clark Haight and Arthur Roberts (who was only at the front 5 days before being killed.) From the list, 15 were born in England, one in Scotland, one in Australia, 8 were born in Aylmer and 8 born in Malahide, as well as being born elsewhere in Canada.

The greater majority were single, with only 10 men married; three had 2 children, one had 3 children, one had lost his wife and a son survived, one was married after enlisting. . Charles Kennington, born in England and living in Malahide for some time but who resided in  St.Thomas as a locomotive fireman when he enlisted, was 35 when killed and had 5 children!

Many died within 2 years of enlisting.But Roland Gatward who joined the war in 1914 was still in active forces when he died in the spring of 1919.

(“Age Shall Not Weary Them” by James McCallum, is a History of East Elgin  men who died in World War I. The book was published in October 2008, by the Elgin County Branch of the Ontario Genealogical Society. His research was conducted by using the Attestation Papers available from the National Library/Archives of Canada website; the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website, and the Veterans Affairs website.   Indexes to the Aylmer Express, St. Thomas Times, and St. Thomas Journal were also used to compile a list of men who gave their lives. Research was also conducted at the Elgin County Archives, Aylmer Library, St. Thomas Library and Elgin Military Museum.

His interest in this project came about as a result of a book launch at the Elgin Military Museum for a book on Ellis Sifton by Jeff Booth to coincide with the 90th anniversary of Vimy Ridge.  Also similar works in Southwold and West Elgin made him realize that no project had ever been undertaken for East Elgin. Mr. McCallum was raised on his maternal farm on the Jamestown Road near Copenhagen. His roots in Malahide Township go back to the 1830s. He currently resides in London . He has been a barber / hairstylist and now works at Ray Fowler’s Barber Shop in St. Thomas. He has been a longtime Chairman of OGS, Elgin branch.

Books are available at $25 from the Elgin Military Museum, Elgin OGS (info@elginogs.ca) or by calling Jean Bircham at 773-9405.

H1N1 UPDATE (issued by StThomas-Elgin Health Unit Tuesday)

  • Today the Chief Medical Officer of Health for Ontario, Dr. Arlene King, announced an expansion to the people being targeted with the available vaccine.  As of today the following groups are eligible to receive the pH1N1 vaccine:
    • All first responders – including fire, police and correctional services
    • All people over the age of 65 years who reside in an institutional setting.  While this age group seems to have more protection against pH1N1 flu than the general public, they are more vulnerable to serious complications and death if they do contact the disease.
    • All people in the existing six priority groups with a special focus on pregnant women.
  • Ontario has received 395,000 doses of vaccine this week of which 3,000 doses are allotted to Elgin County.  The doses received this week will cover the demand of the expanded target groups.
  • Once vaccine allotments for the week of November 16th are known, further expansion will occur.  We do anticipate hearing details of this on Thursday this week.  It is hopeful that the expansion next week will include some doses for school aged children and seniors with chronic health conditions.
  • Community clinics this week have had much lower attendance than previous weeks.  There is one more clinic on Thursday, November 12th at the Timken Centre in St. Thomas.  This clinic will run from 1:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.  As directed by provincial authorities, the focus will remain on high risk and high priority people for this week.
  • Elgin St. Thomas Public Health will be closed for Remembrance Day on Wednesday, November 11th.
  • Details concerning the dates, times and locations of community clinics over the next three weeks will be released on Friday, November 13th, once the expansions are approved.
  • The St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital has established an Alternate Site Flu Assessment Clinic in A-wing of the Complex Continuing Care Centre (CCC).   The clinic hours over the next few days are:
    • Wednesday, November 11th – closed
    • Thursday, November 12th from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m.
    • Friday, November 13th from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m.
    • Saturday, November 14th from 2 p.m. until 8 p.m.
    • Sunday, November 15th from 2 p.m. until 8 p.m.

CEMETERY CLUB’  PLAY COMPLETE, ATTENDANCE DOWN

“Overall attendance was down from last year and we are puzzled as to why. The economy, H1N1, or maybe even the title may have kept people home. We still showed a profit, however. The best night was the one purchased by APAC when we had 107 in the audience. Of non-APAC shows, Friday, November 6 was a great house at 81, but then Saturday’s count was only 33. All the audiences, big or small, were very responsive and thoroughly enjoyed the show.”

(Information supplied by Ron Sawyer, ACT Artistic Director)

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