Douglas Cameron Thomson was born on January 19, 1898 in Port Credit, Ontario, the son of John Thomson, lumber merchant, and his wife, Lillian Blakely.
John Thomson’s home was originally located at 130 Lakeshore Road East but was relocated to the corner of Ann and Park Streets, across from his business the Thomson Lumber Company, founded in 1891 by W. A. Gordon. John ran the business with his brother-in-law, Alex Blakely. When his sons, Alexander and William took over the business they changed the name to Thomson Bros.
Douglas Thomson and his brother, Alex Thomas Thomson, both enlisted in the Canadian Expeditionary Force. Douglas enlisted on May 15, 1916 at Toronto. He gave his birthdate as January 6, 1898 and his father as next of kin. His regimental number was 776075 and he was described on his attestation form as 6 feet tall, with a fresh complexion, grey eyes and dark brown hair. He indicated on his form that he had served 1 year in the 36th Peel Regiment and he was assigned to the 126th Overseas Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Force.
The 126th Overseas Battalion was organized in November 1915 under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel F. J. Hamilton and recruited in Peel County.
Douglas was promoted to Acting Corporal on May 5, 1917 and Lieutenant on September 2, 1917. He served in England with the 116th Battalion and the 9th Battalion CEF, and in France with the 10th Battalion CEF.
Both Thomson brothers were killed in action – Alex in November 1917 and Douglas in September 1918. The Streetsville Review of September 26, 1918 reported as follows:
“One hundred and sixteen men sent to the front, including twelve combatant officers, is the record of which few villages of the size of Port Credit can boast. Early in the war many patriotic young men from the village immediately donned the colours, one of the first being Lieut.-Col. Alex Thompson [sic] of whose brilliant record in winning decorations and promotion in the field from a lieutenancy the village is justly proud. With four other young townsmen, however, Lieut.-Col. Thompson [sic] fell on the field of battle, viz.: Capt. Gordon Duncan, Lieut. Douglas Thompson [sic], Capt. Geo. Hall and Capt. Frank Ott….”
Douglas was killed in action on September 2, 1918 and is buried at Wanquetin Communal Cemetery Extension, Pas de Calais, France, approximately 12 kilometres west of Arras.
Wanquetin Communal Cemetery Extension
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Douglas and Alex Thomson are commemorated on the Port Credit Cenotaph, as well as on plaques in St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Port Credit. A font in the church is also dedicated to their memory.