James Percy McGrath

May 15, 1886

Born in Ottawa, Ontario to James Denis and Catherine “Kate” (nee Fitzpatrick) McGrath

James Percy McGrath was a well known Lacrosse player in the Ottawa area as a member of the Ottawa Stars.  That team won the City Championship in 1910 with James as the leading scorer on the team



Nov 5, 1917

Medical examination conducted under the MSA (Military Service Act of 1917) in Ottawa, Ontario.  He was declared fit for service even though parts of his thumb and middle finger were missing on his left hand.  This was due to an industrial accident in 1908 when his hand was crushed in a Matching Machine


Apr 12, 1918

Conscripted into the 2nd Depot Battalion EOR (Eastern Ontario Regiment) under the MSA, 1917, in Ottawa, Ontario

Ø  Number 3320939

Ø  Next of kin given as Mr. James McGrath, father, Ottawa, Ontario

Ø  Previous occupation given as Railroad Construction

o   Later noted as Carpenter

Ø  No previous military experience given

Ø  Religion given as Roman Catholic

Ø  Posted to the 8th Draft of the 2nd Depot Battalion EOR


May 15, 1918

Embarked the HMT City of Marseilles in Montreal, Quebec



Jun 5, 1918

Disembarked in England and proceeded to Seaford where the entire draft was absorbed into the 6th Reserve Battalion to continue training


Sep 26, 1918

Transferred to the 21st Battalion


Sep 27, 1918

Arrived at the No. 2 CIBD (Canadian Infantry Base Depot) in Etaples, France and TOS (Taken On Strength) the 21st Battalion


Sep 28, 1918

After leaving the base depot, Private McGrath joined the CC Rein C (Canadian Corps Reinforcement Camp) in Aubin St. Vaast


Oct 3, 1918

While at the reinforcement camp, Private McGrath was transferred to the 44th Battalion.  It should be noted that he was 1 of 98 men in the reinforcement camp transferred on this date from the 21st to the 44th Battalion.  All of the men had been conscripted under the MSA


Oct 6, 1918

After leaving the reinforcement camp, he joined the 44th Battalion resting in billets just west of Douai, France as part of a draft of 98 reinforcements from the CC Rein C. 


Nov 6, 1918

Appointed to the rank of Lance Corporal


Nov 11, 1918

The 44th Battalion was resting in billets in the city of Valenciennes, France when the Armistice took effect


Dec 25, 1918

The battalion occupied their time by taking route marches around Belgium and conducting training exercises.  In addition, educational classes were organized to prepare the men for civilian jobs on their return to Canada.  Christmas day was spent in billets in the town of Forville, Belgium


Apr 27, 1919

The battalion proceeded to England, embarking in Le Havre and disembarking in Southampton.  The battalion proceeded to Bramshott where he was posted to “E” Wing pending his return to Canada


May 28, 1919

Embarked the Empress of Britain in Liverpool



Jun 4, 1919

Disembarked in Quebec City, Quebec and proceeded to Ottawa, Ontario


Jun 6, 1919

Discharged from the CEF in Ottawa

Ø  Rank on discharge Lance Corporal

Ø  War Service Badge Class “A” issued number 192352

Ø  Proposed residence on discharge 140 Arthur St., Ottawa, Ontario

Following his discharge, the British War Medal and Victory Medals were sent to him at 499 Booth St., Ottawa, Ontario


Aug 26, 1966

James Percy McGrath died while a patient in the National Defence Medical Centre in Ottawa, Ontario and was buried in the Notre Dame Cemetery in Ottawa.




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