Arthur Johnston, 1863-1949
son: John McQueen Johnston, 1890-1918
wife: Anna (Reid) Johnston, 1868-?
A loving family portrait with one of the few images that we have of John. John was handsome, charismatic, intelligent and seen by all who knew him as being destined for a bright future. In WWI John had been awarded the Military Medal for bravery in action. John and Clifford were first cousins, neighbors back home and great friends. They got together as often as possible. John was with the amunition train that supplied Clifford who was a Bombardier with the Canadian Field Artillery. On July 12, 1918 at Caix, France, while waiting for Clifford he decided to go to the trenches at the front to get a better look at the enemy. It was a fateful decision. He was killed by a German sniper's bullet to the head. His cousin (my grandfather), Cpl. Clifford Johnston had to confirm his identity. Even more difficult for Clifford was explaining John's death to his Uncle Attie and Aunt Annie after the war.
Aunt Annie, as she was known to the rest of the family, was almost completely deaf. She passed that trait onto most of her children. As we can see in this photograph, she was a very slender woman. My Dad used to speak very lovingly of both her and Uncle Attie.
Uncle Attie was a very successful farmer. He eventually owned 500 acres of land, and belonged to the Masons. After his brother Clifford's death in 1926 from mustard gas poisoning suffered in WW I, Attie & Annie took my Dad under their wings. I heard many stories of how Dad would go out with Uncle Attie to collect maple sap, make maple syrup and then enjoy the hot pancakes that Aunt Annie would have waiting for them.