This Remembrance Day, discover your family’s hero.
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Frank Smith Brown was just 22 years old when he penned a poem from the front lines of the First World War. And, sadly, while Sergeant Brown was lost in battle soon after, the poem, and his gift of service to Canada, live on today.
View Sgt. Brown's records in our database:
Photo courtesy of the PPCLI Museum and Archives
The son of a Presbyterian minister, Frank S. Brown (1893-1915) was born in Waterford, Ontario and grew up in Manitoba. He married his love, Isabella, and joined the permanent force two years before the start of the First World War.
Enlisting for war
Frank Brown submitted his enrollment papers (known as attestation papers) on August 26, 1914 — less than one month after war broke out. At only 22, Brown left his wife and young daughter in Almonte, Ontario and sailed to France on January 21, 1915 as a Sergeant in Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry.
The ultimate sacrifice
Like many brave soldiers who paid the ultimate price for our freedom, Sergeant Frank S. Brown was killed in action is St. Eloi, France, just two and a half weeks after departing for war.
"The Poet of the Pats"
While overseas Brown wrote poetry, much of it centred on war, and became known as "The poet of the Pats." A few days after his death, his family received a letter from him – in it was his final poem. Knowing that Brown was unpublished during his life, a fellow soldier in his company published his works after returning home from the war. While Sergeant Frank S. Brown was never celebrated for his writing during life, he is now celebrated for his poems, and his bravery, in death.
The story of Frank S. Brown's service is just one of thousands in the Canadian Military records on Ancestry.ca.
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