Percy Douglas Sinclair Broad
Percy was born on April 13th 1896. He was the son of Professor Dr. W.T. Broad was originally from Calgary Alberta. When he was hired by OkanaganCollege, he purchased an orchard on Jones Flat. Summerland’s OkanaganCollege was located on the north-eastern slope of Giant’s HeadMountain in the centre of the community. It was founded in 1907 and was affiliated with McMasterUniversity. The College offered commercial courses (book-keeping, typewriting), music (piano and voice and academic (full matriculation into McGill, McMaster and other universities). The principle was Samuel Everton. Professor Broads oldest son was Charles, then Harold, ? and their youngest son Percy. The Broad family is the only family in Summerland to have four sons enlisted. One of his sons was a Captain, two were Lieutenants and Percy was a private in Princess Patricia’s Light infantry. During the summer of 1915, Their sons Harold and Charles worked in the Broad orchard
In the September 29 1916 issue of the Summerland Review, the newspaper described the death of Percy Broad. He was the youngest of the four Broad boys. Percy was born in BramptonEngland. At the age of nineteen, in 1915 Percy enlisted with the Fourth University Corps of the Princess Patricia’s Light Infantry Regiment. Following training in England in 1915 he left for France and fought in the second battle of Ypres on June 2nd. This battle had a huge number of casualties but Percy survived. He also saw action during the third battle of Ypres. He was killed in action in the battle of Somme.
He died at the age of 20. He had been a law student at the University of Calgary. He completed his law degree, and his examinations for barrister and his LL.B. Following the battle of Ypres, he wrote that , “I had enough narrow escapes myself to turn a man’s hair grey. Twice I was buried by a parapet being blown in on top of me. I was hit dozens of times on the head by big lumps of rock which wold have laid me out but for my steel helmet. I got some bad cuts on the arm from flying fragments, but apart from that didn’t get hit at all.” On September 8th 1916 he wrote to his parents; “don’t worry about me or the other boys when they come over. There is nothing really to be alarmed about. I am having the time of my life and would not have missed coming for anything. It is the only thing worth while I ever did. There are hardships once in a while, but what can you expect out here? They are not as bad when you really come to face them. The man who is cuddling over the fire imagines the storm outside to be a whole lot worse than he would find it to be if he went out in it. So make up your mind that things are not so bad as you think.”
Shortly before he was killed he wrote on September 3rd that, “the experiences we have to go through out here son take away all our pleasures in the things that used to interest us and letters are about the only things I know that can raise one out of this condition of coma. It is war, war, war all of the time. It is the only thing we talk about, and when we are not actually at grip with the enemy, we are steadily and persistently training for that day when we get our chance. It is impossible to think of or to take any interest in anything else. You might call it mental paralysis; but of course it is inevitable and there is only one way to change it. That is the task that lies ahead of us. I often think that 90 per cent of the people at home do not realize that there is a war on.” While serving with the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (Eastern Ontario Regiment) P.P.C.L.I.. Percy was killed on September 15th 1916.The Calgary Herald wrote,
“Private Percy Broad was one of Calgary’s brightest and most promising young men. He was beloved by all who knew him and the sympathy of many will go out to his bereaved family. Private Broad was an enthusiastic tennis player and was considered one of the stars of the Calgary Tennis Club.” He is buried at the Coucelette British Cemetery, Somme France. (R#475375)