161st Battalion Mobilizes for Training

Battalion Events

On Monday, May 22, 1916, on Victoria Day, “B” Company mobilized in The Square in Goderich and they marched to Clinton, where other detachments gathered to take the train to their basic training camp at Carling Heights in London, ON.

According to Bert Ward, a 161st Huron Battalion veteran, “We were allowed one stop, at Holmesville. … The ladies of the Holmesville Methodist Church Soldiers Aid provided us with lunch and refreshments.”

Enlistments – May 22, 1916

Three men enlisted with the 161st Huron Battalion on May 22, 1916. One recruit did not survive WWI.

654860, BARR, (Pte.) Walter Earl, “Blyth’s Own”, enlisted in Blyth on March 22, 1916. His next of kin was John Barr of Blyth, ON. Private Earl Barr’s brother, Private Will Barr also enlisted in the 161st Huron Battalion. Private Earl Barr was photographed with Blyth’s Own standing in the 2nd row, 13th from the left.

Private Walter Earl Barr survived WWI and moved to Ridgetown, ON, in Kent County, where he took a job as a herdsman for the Agricultural College. He died by 1977.

654853, HANNENT, (Pte.) Oxley Harold, “C” Company, enlisted in Clinton on May 22, 1916. Harold Hannent was born in England and his next of kin on his attestation form was listed as his father, Oxley H. Hannent of Clinton, who had enlisted with the 161st two days prior to Private Hannent.

Private H.O. Hannent Sr. did not survive WWI. He was killed in action. He was commemorated as H.O Hannent on the Royal Canadian Cenotaph 140 in Library Park in Clinton, ON.

654875, HORTON, (Pte.) Hillary “Tim”, “C” Company, enlisted in Exeter on May 22, 1916, his hometown before and after WWI.

While overseas in England, Private Tim Horton took non-commissioned officer training at Folkestone, a town on the southeast coast of England. While in training, Private Tim Horton, Private Abe and Harold Brandon of Bayfield had a photo taken, that A.C. Brandon of 193 Elizabeth St., Goderich still had that was to be used in Sandy MacDonald’s manuscript, Huron Overseas, but was never featured.

Private Hillary Horton (aka Tim Horton) survived WWI and was living in Exeter, ON in 1935.

Tim Horton died on November 29, 1945, at the age of 70, when the bicycle he was riding collided with a car on Exeter’s main street.

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