At every Remembrance day, I remember in particular my Grandfather and my Great Uncle whom I knew and who served in WWI. But this year, thanks to my sister Diana, who has been doing all the work, I would like to honour the wider family by name who served in both wars. When you see the list - you may also wonder about your wider family. How great was their sacrifice and effort. Diana and I have found this research deeply moving and meaningful. I know you will too if you look more deeply into your family.
The Patersons were part of a close knit group of intermarried Scots families who played a major role in the establishment of Canada. All the sons and many of the daughters served in WWI. Many were killed or wounded. For the women at home - it must have been unbearable. My Great Great Aunt, lost all her children. Some lost their husbands in one war and their son in the next.
Diana and I remember them most of all.
At the centre of the "Clan" were the Allans - who while capitalists of a first order - had a deep sense of duty. The Allans lived on both sides of the Atlantic and family members saw each other often. Most of the Canadian boys were educated in England. Some served in the British Army.
But Canada weeps for them all. For to survive was not the end. Many were scarred for life both in body and soul.
My grandfather Alec, just promoted to Major. He was in France and in every action from Feb 1915 to September 9, 1918. He was one of the few from the 1st Division who volunteered in 1914 to survive. Here is an entry from the Battery War diary that talks to this.
First of all the fallen in WWI.
Gwendolyn Evelyn Allan, aged 17, and Anna Marjory Allan, aged 15, (her body was never recovered) drowned at the sinking of the Lusitania 7th May 1915. Their mother was rescued and stayed in England to found a hospital for Canadian soldiers. Her son Hugh was to die the following year.
Her son, Flight Sub Lieutenant Hugh Allan, son of Lt Col Sir Hugh Montague Allan - the then patriarch of the family - killed on his first mission aged 20 on July 6 1917.
Captain John James Allan Liverpool Scottish killed 27th April 1916. His mother, Edith, had taken him to sign up on 15th May 1915
Allan Routledge killed 23rd Sept 1916
Temp Major - Captain Montague Claud Gribbon died 8th December 1915 at Kut el Amara in Mesopotamia - left his widow 389 pounds
Major Charles Napier North, Montague Claud Gribbon's brother in law, shot in the head by a sniper while inspecting wire near Zonnebeke Loos Nov 1st 1914 - left his widow 224 pounds 2 shillings and 3 pence.
Captain George R Houston Boswall of the Grenadier Guards, died Loos 27th September 1915 aged 38!
Alexander Young, son of James Allan ( all we know right now)
Those who survived WWI
Major Claud MacFie - Seaforth Highlanders - DSO Gallipoli
Lieutenant Ellice Allan Mackenzie Royal Canadian Artillery
Major James MacFie - India
Lt Col Bryce Allan DSO Gallipoli
Lieutenant Duncan Charles Allan son of Margaret MacFie - daughter of Sir Hugh Allan
Major Alexander Thomas Paterson (CFA) DSO and Bar - Served in France from Feb 1915 to September 9 1918 when he was gassed - My paternal Grandfather
Lieutenant Hartland Paterson lost a leg to wounds in his first action on September 12th 1918 - Alec's brother and my Great Great Uncle
Captain James Blackwood Paterson - Paymaster for the Canadian Black Watch and lender of last resort to all Canadian Officers!
Lt Col Charles Ballantyne - personally raised 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards (Canada) - My maternal great grandfather
Charles Bridges - It's complicated!
Major Charles Hope (CFA) My wife's Grandfather
The Fallen in WWII
Flight Lieutenant William Hope - 1944 Killed testing a Typhoon - Charlie Hope's eldest son and my wife Robin's Uncle
Captain Hugh Ellice Mackenzie Canadian Grenadier Guards - we have not found out how he died yet
Second Lieutenant George Cleeton Houston-Boswall Royal Scots regiment in December 1941 at Hong Kong
Served in WWII
Commander Robert Alexander Allan - RNVR - DSO Crois de Guerre, OBE
Midshipman James Alexander Paterson CRN (my dad) invalided out of the service
Cpl Francis Hope, my father in law