Manitoulin District Cenotaph
Manitoulin Island, Ontario

Construction took place from 1989 to 1997 in memory of 128 fallen militia and 2,200 Canadian Merchant Seamen.

The Veterans' Memorial Gardens complex is located on Manitoulin Island at the intersection of Highway 542 and Carnarvon Side-road #5. It is comprised of two parks on either side of the side-road.

Records indicate the project was conceived and supervised by a WWI veteran James (Jim) Wilson. It was unveiled and dedicated in September 1921. It was jointly sponsored by Campbell and Carnarvon townships, and funded by local residents. The inscription block on the Cenotaph pedestal was sculpted from marble and appropriately engraved with the names and details of four local soldiers killed in action in WWI. Four more names were added after WWII.

In the early 1960s, the structure was heavily damaged in an auto accident. The statue was destroyed but the remainder was salvaged and replaced with an obelisk. It was relocated on what eventually became the base of the Merchant Navy Memorial, as shown. In the left foreground of the photo is what is now known as the Manitoulin District Cenotaph Park but the structure is still under construction. The land was donated by George White, veteran of WWI and II.

In the fall of 1989, a committee was organized primarily to improve the park and replace the obelisk with a new statue. This culminated in a proposal to explore the possibility of expanding the complex and upgrading it to district status. Research indicated a new monument was needed. This led to sponsorship by local Royal Canadian Legions #177 and #514, Little Current and Gore Bay. The funding was greatly enhanced by public support. This enabled further expansion, including the background structures, the memorial plaque wing, the monolith, the ceremonial dais, and other components.

Eventually, Comrade Bert Hill donated another park across the side road. The Veterans' Memorial Gardens is now comprised of a picnic area, parking for buses and vehicles, and a parade square. It represents two towns, seven Indian Reservations, 22 townships, and honours 128 fallen militia and 2,200 Canadian Merchant Seamen.

All of this happened in four and a half years of a scheduled six year project. It was backed by the generosity of 11,200 residents, many donors, unlimited publicity by two local newspapers, two determined and generous legions and an irrepressible, long suffering, never-say-die committee of twelve WWII veterans.

The Cenotaph was dedicated on June 5th, 1994. Since then, the numbers of names on the Cenotaph have increased to 130, and more are expected to be found.

War World I   War World II
Plaque #1

Joseph Adams
?   Anwatin
Alexander L. Ballantyne
Benjamin Ballantyne
George Baxter

Plaque #2

Harry Beatty
Lawrence Beatty
Percy Beck
Sam Blackburn
Austin W. Blackie
Ernest J. Blackie
Lorne Bradley
Harry W. Brown
Michael Cada
Norman Campbell
William Carr
Isban A. Clark
George W. Collins
Edwin E. Cook
John Cowan
John D. Currie

Plaque #3

Jack Elliot
Joseph Enosse
F. Walter Farthing
Amerod Ferguson
Blair Frazer
Joseph C. Gallagher
R. Joseph Good
Augustus Hartung
Victor Hewson
Robert R. Hill
Charles Holmes
Wilfred J. Holmes
John Hughson
Robert Hunter
William Jackman
Alexander G. Jeffery

Plaque #4

Edgar Kent
Frank Lavallee
John E. Leach
John Maguire
Harvey C. Marshall
Dave Matheson
John McDonald
John Keddy
John McMillan
James Merrilees
Ernest Minors
Nelson Minors
Vincent Misinishkotewe
Thomas Moore
Louis J. Norton
Eli Louis Niganiwah

Plaque #5

Thomas Niganiwina
Frank Nighswander
James T. Pattison
Andrew Peltier
Percy Pifer
Franklin Proulx
James A. Raynor
W. Leslie Riching
William Rousseau
Lorne Rumley
Laurence Russell
Clarence Rush
Leslie Scott
Colin D. Sims
James F. Valliquette

Plaque #6

Michael Wabanosse
Lorne Walker
William Wickett
Arlif R. Wilkin
Alden Wilkinson
Robert Willet
Valentine Wilman
Nelson Young
  Plaque #7

Gilbert Alexander
Keith Beange
Kenneth Buck
Les Campbell
Aubrey Chalmers
Richard J. Clark
Dominic Corbiere
Everett Coulter
Hubert Coulter
John A. Eadie
Ivan Falls
Lloyd Fowler
William Fowler

Plaque #8

Alphonse Gaiashk
Fredrick G. Green
John C. Halcrow
J. Lloyd Hall
Morland L. Hembruff
Steve R.G. Hilson
James S. Howard
Eric C. Hughson
J. Mac Johnson
Leonard Lehman
Norman F. Lockyer
Henry Mandamin
Alponse Manitowabi (Korea)
Russell McCraken
Theodore McGregor
Armand McMillian

Plaque #9

Leonard Mumford
Charles Nahwegezhic
Roland Nahwegezhic
L. W. Orford
John Ozaomik
Alfred Pitawanakwat
Burt Rogue
Frank Rowe
Wilbert Rowe
Ernest Sagle
Isaac Shawanda
Robert Smeltzer
Russell Stringer
Zoey Trudeau
Lyle Van Horn
Douglas M. Wagg

Plaque #10

Clarence Wakegijic
Douglas Weeks
Felix Wemigwans
A. Floyd Williamson
Albert J. Williamson
Douglas Wright

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