Roy Ernest Acton



Mar 29, 1895

Born at Watford Ontario to James and Bertha (nee Lett) Acton                                                     


Nov 27, 1915

Attested into the 98th Battalion at St Catharines Ontario 

Ø      Number 210057

Ø      Next of kin given as James Acton (father) of Watford Ontario

Ø      Previous occupation given as Banker

Ø      No previous military experience given

Ø      Religion given as Methodist

Ø      Assigned to the Headquarters Company Staff


Jul 16, 1916

Embarked the RMS Lapland at Halifax Nova Scotia


Jul 25, 1916

Disembarked at Liverpool England


Oct 6, 1916

Transferred to the 98th Battalion at Otterpool


Oct 30, 1916

Transferred to the 39th Reserve Battalion at Seaford


Jan 4, 1917

Transferred to the newly formed 6th Reserve Battalion at West Sandling


Feb 7, 1917

Transferred to the 21st Battalion


Feb 8, 1917

Arrived at the CBD (Canadian Base Depot) at the Rouelles Camp, Havre France as part of a draft of 85 reinforcements arriving from England


Feb 12, 1917

Proceeded to France and TOS (Taken On Strength) the 21st Battalion


Feb 14, 1917

Left the CBD to join the Battalion


Feb 15, 1917

Pte Acton joined the 21st Battalion in the front line near Vimy Ridge


Nov 3, 1917

Killed in action at the age of 22 during an enemy attack North East of Crest Farm, on the Passchendaele front.

Although he was buried near where he fell and his grave site recorded, when the war ended his remains could not be located for reburial.  The continuous shelling for another 12 months after his death caused the burial ground to be completely obliterated and this is most likely the reason for this.  As a result, he is commemorated on the Menin Gate, at Ypres Belgium

Following the war, the British War Medal, Victory Medal, Plaque (Dead Man’s Penny) and Scroll were sent to his father, James Acton, at RR No 3 Watford Ontario. 

No Memorial Cross was issued as his mother had predeceased him



During the Remembrance Day ceremonies in 2008, Veteran's Affairs Canada conducted a vigil each night for the week leading up to November 11.  This vigil consisted of projecting the names of every Canadian soldier who is listed with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission on various buildings and monuments across Canada, and in London England.  The photo below shows Pte Roy Acton's name being projected on the outside wall of Canada House in London England.




For the 7 nights leading up to November 11, 2010, the names of all Canadian soldiers killed during the war were projected onto the Belgian War Memorial in Ypres.  At the same time, the same names were being broadcast via the internet to schools across Belgium and Canada.  The image above shows the opening ceremonies at the Belgian War Memorial on November 4, 2010. 

Below on the left is the name of Roy Acton being projected on that wall.  Below right shows the name being broadcast to the schools.  Each name appeared for 25 seconds and each night 9,700 names were shown.


The Roll of Honour below hangs in the Watford Ontario United Church and is reproduced here with their permission

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