Robert Lauriston ‘Bob’Callan
Robert Lauriston Callan was born June 22 1887 in Peebles Peebleshire Scotland .His parents, William and Margaret Callan lived at the Eshills Farm in Peebles Scotland. Bob lived in Prairie Valley (DL 474 Bk 16). He listed his occupation as a labourer. He enlisted on August 11 1915 and initially went to Camp Vernon. His younger brother by six years, brother George from Calgary enlisted on May 15th 1915..Within a week of his enlistment he earned promotion to Lance-Corporal. The day after joining the camp at Vernon Bob was picked out of the parade as a promising recruit. And within the week was officially attached to the 54th as Lance-Corporal. Bob did have previous training in England and Scotland and that may have assisted in the rapid promotion. Bob was anxious to go to France and requested to be assigned to another battalion at the risk of demotion. Bob again became a ‘Private’ and left for Europe. Private Percy Holder described Bob’s decision in a letter. Percy wrote, “ Bob Callan threw up his stripe soon after we left Vernon.” Private Robert Lauriston Callan of the Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment) 54th Battalion was killed on September 17th 1916. A letter published in the Summerland Review (October 13th 1916) described his death. The letter, “ I expect you have heard the bad news about Bob Callan before now. Our fellows made a raid into the German trenches the other night and Bob was missing. He may have been killed or perhaps wounded and captured by the Germans. The last that was seen of him he was using his knobkerrie on a German over the parapet of their trenches, but he hope he was captured. Jim Gordon and I were not in the raid.” He is buried at Menin Gate (Ypres) Memorial (Panel 18-24-26-30).
Bob was survived by his sister T.H. Ramsey of Summerland. (R#443651)