A Benchmark Day For Canada As The Last WW1 Veteran Dies

Real Estate Agent with Sutton Group West Coast Realty

Writer’s of Canadian History state that Canada became a nation through its participation and the maiming and death of its soldiers during the Great War of 1914 to 1918. This was to be the war to end all wars.

Today with the recent death of John Babcock, the last surviving John BabcockCanadian soldier, the page has turned as there are no remaining veterans of that war. Although John Babcock’s participation was minimal and he moved away from his native land, in recent years he had become the image of that war’s Canadians who rallied to the call of duty that was sent out across Canada to fight for King and Country.

I was born in a time that there were many veterans and both world wars in my life. My father’s brother, a bugler, suffered the effects of mustard gas poisoning. Although he was able to gain some fame as a landscape artist in the North East and Great Lakes the effects of the war never allowed him to lead a full life. I remember seeing him before he died in 1948 and the image has stayed with me all my life.

Today I feel the linkage between John Babcock, my uncle John Dunn and the many veterans I have meet.

In 1904 Sir Wilfred Laurier said, "The nineteenth century was the century of the United States," ……. "I think that we can claim that it is Canada that shall fill the twentieth century."

Laurier would not have foreseen Canada suffering a 40% casualty rate and 67,000 deaths in a war ten years later. A high cost for nationhood.

I will say a prayer today for those who gave so much forPoppy the enjoyment I have as a Canadian in this century.

Comments (5)

Deborah Byron Leffler BzyBee Real Estate Lady!
Keller Williams Realty Boise - Nampa, ID

WOW...it is a benchmark day!  My husband helps out with the Honor Guard for the AMerican LEgion and VFW...doing funerals for veterans!    He considers it an honor to lift up those who served their countries!!! 
Thanks for the post!

Feb 19, 2010 03:59 AM
Janice Ankrett
Janice Ankrett Home Staging - Burlington, ON
Staging Professional

My mother was one of 7 children. One of her older sisters married a WWI vet 7yrs her senior. He was a scout and was badly injured during the war. He was one of the last vets to come home because of his long stay in hospital.

Feb 19, 2010 09:58 AM
Terry Chenier
Homelife Glenayre Realty - Mission, BC


Even the WW2 vets are dropping fast now. Most are in their 80's and 90's.

Feb 20, 2010 01:24 AM
Brian Madigan
RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto) - Toronto, ON
LL.B., Broker


That was an amazing story. I should also mention that it was on the front page of several Toronto newspapers.

109 is hard to believe for anyone.


Feb 20, 2010 03:30 AM
Malcolm Johnston
Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario - Trenton, ON
Trenton Real Estate

Hi Bob, that's an incredible picture of the young man. Only 16 years old. It really makes me think about the blessings in my own life when I was that age.

Feb 20, 2010 05:34 AM