Alexander Mitchell McFarlane

Thank you to Bruce Kettles for providing the service file


Sep 23, 1894

Born to Matthew and Elizabeth Jane (nee Revoy) McFarlane in Marmora, Ontario


Mar 10, 1917

Attested into the 254th Battalion in Marmora, Ontario

Ø      Number 1093357

Ø      Next of kin given as Elizabeth McFarlane, mother, Marmora, Ontario

Ø      Previous occupation given as Labourer

Ø      No previous military experience given

Ø      Religion given as Roman Catholic


Jun 2, 1917

Embarked the SS Olympic in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Jun 9, 1917

Disembarked in Liverpool, England and the battalion proceeded to Seaford.  On arrival the battalion was absorbed into the 6th Reserve Battalion for training.


Sep 2, 1917

Transferred to the 21st Battalion and arrived at the No. 2 CIBD (Canadian Infantry Base Depot) in Etaples, France as part of a draft of 83 reinforcements from England and TOS (Taken On Strength) the 21st Battalion


Sep 14, 1917

Left the CIBD to join the CC Rein C (Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp)


Sep 16, 1917

Joined the CC Rein C in Villers au Bois


Oct 14, 1917

Left the CC Rein C and joined the 21st Battalion in Villers au Bois.  The battalion was preparing to move into the Passchendaele front


Nov 9, 1917

While the battalion was involved in heavy fighting in the front lines in Passchendaele over a 3 day period, Private McFarlane was declared missing in action.  His body was reported to have been seen shot through the head, but when the fighting subsided, his body could not be located.  He is thus reported as having been killed in action between the 9th and 12th of November.  He had been with the battalion less than 1 month.

Because his body was never recovered from the battlefield, he is commemorated on the panels of the Menin Gate in Ypres, Belgium, for those who died in Belgium and have no known grave.

Following the war the British War Medal, Victory Medal and Memorial Cross were sent to his mother, Mrs. Elizabeth McFarlane, Marmora, Ontario

The Plaque (Dead Man’s Penny) and Scroll were sent to his father, Matthew McFarlane, at the same address


Private McFarlane is also honoured on the War Memorial in Marmora, Ontario

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