Lambton at War


The First World War

George Gray

George, the son of Donald and Mary (Black) Gray, was born 30 November 1888 according to his Attestation Paper.   The 1890 Farmers Directory for Lambton County shows Donald Gray living at concession Front, lot 25, Plympton Township [Aberarder post office].

According to his obituary, George completed his education and then went to the Canadian Northwest. He was unmarried when he enlisted 12 December 1914 at Winnipeg.  The next of kin noted on George’s Attestation Paper is a brother, Daniel A. Gray, living at 327 Russell Street, Sarnia.  George gave farmer as his occupation on the Attestation Paper.

Private George was serving with the No. 12, Platoon, No. 3 Company, 2nd Battalion of the CEF at the time of his death near Festubert, Artois Region, France.  He was in the process of completing a communications trench when a German shell struck the trench beside him and exploded.

His death occurred because “pieces of the shell had struck him in the back and his death was painless and virtually instantaneous.  ” His commanding officer, Lt. T. C. Biggar, noted in his letter to George’s brother Daniel, that he had “…marked this [George’s grave] with a cross, giving his name and regiment number and stating that he was killed in action on the 30th of May, 1915.” Since the Circumstances of Death Register notes no record of burial, the marker was probably destroyed by later fighting.

~ Story told by Alan Campbell, Sarnia who researched George Gray as a voluntary project for the Plympton-Wyoming Museum.