William Wood was born in Blanshard, Perth, Ontario on 31st January 1897.
The 1901 census for Canada on Ancestry.co.uk shows that the Wood family were living in the District of Perth in the Province of Ontario. Head of the household, Alexander Wood age 47, born 6th October 1856 in Scotland, had emigrated to Canada with his wife Margaret (Maggie) also born in Scotland, in 1880. Alexander was a Farmer by trade, he and his wife Maggie had seven children living at home in 1901. They were, Jane, age 19 born 11/8/1881, John, age 17 born 29/7/1883, James, age 15 born 10/2/1886, George, age 10 born 22/10/1891, David, age 7 born 24/8 1894, William, age 4 born 31/1/1897 and Annabell, age 2 born 21/10/1899.
I cannot trace the family on any census forms after 1901.
Attestation papers for Private 3131221, William Wood from the Library of Canada.
Williams was drafted into the 1st Depot battalion of the Canadian Army on 26th October 1917 at Stratford, Ontario and had his medical on 28th March 1918 when he was described as being 5ft 5 ins tall with a ruddy complexion, blue eyes and light brown hair. He gave his father Alexander Wood as next of kin, address St. Mary’s Ontario, religion, Presbyterian, status, single and trade, Labourer.
Unfortunately William was reported missing on 29th April 1918 and as a result of this was captured on 19th June 1918 and sentenced to two years imprisonment. He was released from custody and transferred to 4th Reserve Battalion and embarked for England on the same day aboard the S.S.Durham Castle, arriving in England on 25th Sept 1918 when he was posted to Whitley Army Camp to complete training. As it became apparent that the war was drawing to a close, William was transferred to Kinmel Army Camp in North Wales.
Kinmel Park Camp was a segregation camp used to house Canadian Soldiers awaiting repatriation to Canada after the end of WW1. Unfortunately the conditions at that time were extremely harsh with a lack of every kind of commodity, the camp was overcrowded and the services were poor, there were shortages of clothing, food and blankets. As a result of this situation, a vast number of servicemen and women became ill and many succumbed to the Influenza Epidemic or complications associated with this infection.
Sadly William contracted Influenza and was admitted to the Canadian General Hospital where he became dangerously ill on 22nd October 1918 and died on 23rd October 1918.
William was awarded the British War Medal.
All his possessions, medal, plaque and scroll were sent to his father.
William Wood is buried in St. Margaret’s Cemetery, Bodelwyddan, North Wales.
He is commemorated on the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.