William Mears

Rank: 
Private
Regimental number: 
164147, 270399
Unit at enlistment: 
215th Battalion
Force: 
C.E.F.
Volunteered or conscripted: 
Volunteered
Survived the war: 
No
Date of death: 
March 18th, 1919
Cemetery: 
Paris Cemetery, Soldiers' Plot, Paris, Ontario
Commemorated at: 
St. James Anglican Church (Paris)
Birth country: 
England
Birth county: 
Greater London
Birth city: 
London
Address at enlistment: 
West River Street, Paris, Ontario
Next of kin address: 
West River Street, Paris, Ontario
Trade or calling: 
Labourer
Religious denominations: 
Church of England
Marital status: 
Married
Age at enlistment: 
37

Letters and documents

Cause of Death: Tubercular Kidney
Location: Paris, Ontario

BX March 9, 1919

Two Veterans of Paris Dead

PARIS, March 19 – Paris mourns today two veterans of the Great War. Last night at his home on Willow Street, William Mears passed away in his 41st year. He was born in London, England and had been married 21 years, coming to Canada with his wife in 1902, and settling in Montreal for a while and later coming to Stratford and finally to Paris nine years ago. He enlisted in August, 1914 and was sent home from Valcartier, later joining the Dragoons to be transferred to the 84th Battalion and still later becoming a member of the 215th Battalion from which he was sent to the base hospital. He became more of less of an invalid, and had been ill for about nine weeks at his home. Besides his widow, he leaves one son, Ernest, and five daughters, Florence, Clara, Mamie, Ethel and Dorothy. In London, England his is survived by his mother, two sisters, also one brother in the Imperials. One brother was killed in the war. A military funeral will be given the deceased, which will take place tomorrow afternoon at 1.30 from the late residence.
    
BX March 21, 1919

Last Honors to Paris Veterans – Privates William Mears and William MacDowell Laid to Rest

PARIS, March 21 – With fitting military honors, the remains of two Paris returned veterans who passed away at their homes, were tenderly laid at rest here on Thursday. The members of the Paris G.W.V.A. were assisted by a number of the members of the Brantford branch, who thus paid a last fitting farewell to their deceased brothers-in-arms, a band formed of Brantford veterans, producing the music.

Private William Mears was laid to rest in the Paris cemetery after funeral services had been held at St. James’ Church, where Rev. Rural Dean Seton-Adamson had charge of the services. The remains of Private William MacDowell, of Brantford Township, a veteran of the 125th, who had been discharged at Camp Borden, were also laid to rest in the cemetery, the services being conducted by Rev. W.H. Laughton.

The attendance at the funerals was large, the citizens at large and the veterans in particular in this manner paying their tribute of respect to the two heroic dead.

BX March 20, 1916

Did 84th Private Have Lumbago? Medical Men Were Not Sure, So Pte. Mears will be Discharged

At the police court this morning the charge of being absent without leave against Pte. Mears of the 84th battalion revealed a peculiarity complicated affair.

A short time ago Mears was absent without leave, and gave his excuse as being sick.  His trouble he claimed to be lumbago, this being a disease that a medical officer finds hard to diagnose.  As the officers didn’t know whether Mears was “shamming” or not his case was taken before the local military medical board.

In police court this morning Dr. Chapin, the chairman of the board gave out his findings.  A physical examination, he said, would not disprove the prisoner’s statement, his word having to be taken.  The accused claimed his back was troubling him most of the time, but the doctor said that this was not the way the usual case acted, only bothering a man intermittently.

“It is one of those convenient diseases that if he wants to work, alright, and if he doesn’t want to work, alright,” commented the magistrate.

Lt.-Col. Stewart then told the magistrate that if the man was let go on the charge of being absent without leave he would be discharged from the battalion as being medically unfit.

Dr. McGainty, the M.O. of the 84th battalion told the court that he had since found out that Mears had been at Valcartier and discharged and that he had also been discharged from Imperial regiment as unfit.

“Even if your story is a true one, Mears, you had no business leaving without permission,” said Magistrate Livingston.  “However, as your colonel has requested that I deal leniently with you I will allow you to go on suspended sentence.”

The sentence was accordingly suspended and it is now the intention to discharge Mears as being medically unfit for active service.

Note: William Mears originally enlisted as Nicholas William Mears with the 84th Battalion.