McMillan, Robert Watson (No. A/20091)

McMillan, Robert Watson (Robert)

Private

No. A/20091, 19th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment)     

Died of wounds on Friday 30 June 1916 (aged 23)

Buried:

Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Belgium (Grave VIII. B. 33)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Canadian Virtual War Memorial (CVWM)

Canadian First World War Book of Remembrance

Newtownards and District War Memorial

Presbyterian Church in Ireland (PCI) Roll of Honour 1914 – 1919 for

Greenwell Street Presbyterian Church Newtownards

BIOGRAPHY

In some Canadian service records his number is 420091.

Robert Watson McMillan was born on 29 August 1892 in Greenwell Street Newtownards and he was the eldest son of Alexander and Annie McMillan (nee Watson) who were married on 22 August 1891 in Newtownards Zion Methodist Church.  Alexander McMillan from Bowtown, Newtownards was a son of Alexander McMillan, a labourer.  Annie Watson from Greenwell Street, Newtownards was a daughter of John Watson, a weaver.

The McMillan family lived at 93 Greenwell Street Newtownards.

Alexander McMillan worked as a general labourer, Annie McMillan worked as a wool weaver and they had seven children, all of whom were baptised in Greenwell Street Presbyterian Church:

Robert Watson (born 29 August 1892 in Greenwell Street Newtownards)

Mary Elizabeth Bennett (Minnie, born 14 April 1894 in Greenwell Street Newtownards)

Alexander (born 11 September 1896 in Greenwell Street Newtownards)

Mary (May, born 9 March 1903)

John Watson (born 14 November 1905 in Greenwell Street Newtownards)

Albert (born 25 November 1908 in Greenwell Street Newtownards)

William (born 3 August 1913 in Greenwell Street Newtownards)

Robert McMillan worked as a bread server before he moved to Canada around 1912.  There he worked as a labourer before he enlisted in Winnipeg on 18 December 1914.  In his attestation papers it was noted that he was 5 feet 11 inches tall with a pale complexion, brown eyes and brown hair and he had a tattoo (part of a flag) on his left arm.  He sailed from Montreal aboard the SS Grampian on 1 June 1915 and went to France on 17 July 1915.

Private Robert McMillan served with the 19th Battalion Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment) and he went to the Front in the summer of 1915.  Private Robert McMillan was 23 when he was ‘dangerously wounded’ in action on 16 June 1916 and he died of his injuries two weeks later, at 5.30 pm on 30 June 1916, in No. 10 Casualty Clearing Station (CCS).  He had sustained shrapnel wounds to the head.  In his will he left all of his property and effects to his mother.