Veteran Stories:
Jesse McInnis

Army

  • Copy of the page on which Pte. Jesse McInnis appears in the National Book of Remembrance held at the Peace Tower in Ottawa. Pte. McInnis died in a prisoner of war camp on 9 October 1918. He had been captured at Mons. Courtesy of Leola Eyres.

  • The attestation paper for Pte. Jesse McInnis. 1 April 1916. Courtesy of Leola Eyres.

  • Description of Jesse McInnis on enlistment. 1 April 1916. Courtesy of Leola Eyres.

  • Jesse McInnis' medical history sheet at the time of his enlistment. 1 April 1916. Courtesy of Leola Eyres.

  • The Government of Canada's record of Jesse McInnis' presumed death. Courtesy of Leola Eyres.

  • Jesse McInnis' enlistment photo. His regimental number was #839046. Courtesy of Leola Eyres.

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"On the 29th of October 1918, he was reported missing and wounded. Later we learned that he had a leg missing. He died of wounds while he was a prisoner of war of the Germans in the field hospital in Denain, France, which at the time was occupied territory."

Transcript

My name is Leola Eyres and my maiden name was Porteus, and I was doing genealogy on the Porteus family, and Jesse Alexander McInniss was the son of Catharine Porteus and Jesse McGuiness Sr. He was born June the 3rd 1897, Derby Township, Grey County, Ontario, and enlisted April the 1st 1916 in the Grey and Simcoe Foresters, which became part of the 147th Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force. Military number was 839046.

He arrived in England on November the 20th 1916 aboard the SS Olympic. He went to France the 13th of September 1917. In July of 1918 he was awarded a good conduct medal. The Canadian Expeditionary Force were advancing from Cambria to Mons during the time between the 12th of October and the 11th of November 1918. They liberated many of the small places in France from the Germans, and one of them was Denain. On the 29th of October 1918, he was reported missing and wounded. Later we learned that he had a leg missing. He died of wounds while he was a prisoner of war of the Germans in the field hospital in Denain, France, which at the time was occupied territory. He was buried by the Germans and no grave marker was ever placed over him.

I did some research and found out that in Denain there is a military war cemetery, and he is commemorated by name on that stone, with many other Canadians who suffered the same fate. He was awarded the Military Medal posthumously, which was presented to his mother, Catharine McInniss. As a token of condolence to the parents, the neighbours, friends and relatives had no funeral to attend, so their expression of sympathy became a Seth Thomas mantel clock with a small plaque commemorating Jesse McGuiness.

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