Zachary, John (No. 830497)

Zachary, John


No. 830497, 8th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (Manitoba Regiment)

Died in service on Sunday 5 August 1917 (aged 31)


Bully-Grenay Communal Cemetery, British Extension, France (Grave IV. D. 3)


Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Canadian Virtual War Memorial (CVWM)

Canadian First World War Book of Remembrance

Journey of Remembering Belfast Book of Honour


The death of Private John Zachary (No. 830497) was reported in the 17 August 1917 edition of the County Down Spectator under the headline Well-known Bangor Man Killed.

John Zachary was born on 14 August 1885 at 18 Upper Frank Street, Belfast and he was a son of John George and Jane Zachary (nee Goodwin) who were married on 12 July 1871 in St Anne’s Church of Ireland Church Belfast.

The Zachary family lived in Willow Street, Belfast; Upper Frank Street, Belfast; Hartington Street, Belfast; Durham Street, Belfast; Hamilton Road, Bangor and at Norbrae, 37 Kirkliston Drive, Bloomfield, Belfast.

John George Zachary worked as a civil engineer with Belfast Corporation and he and Jane had at least ten children including:

James (born 4 June 1874)

Margaret Fishwick (born 12 June 1876 at 36 Willow Street, Belfast)

Jane (born 1 August 1878 at 38 Willow Street, Belfast; married Thomas Hugh Boyd on 30 August 1904 in Bangor Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Comgall’s)

George Watkin (born 28 July 1880)

Frederick William (born 21 June 1883 at 38 Willow Street, Belfast)

John (born 14 August 1885 at 18 Upper Frank Street, Belfast)

Frances Louisa (born 22 December 1887 at 9 Hartington Street, Belfast)

Charles Stephenson (born 26 May 1890 at 86 Durham Street, Belfast)

Esther (born 2 August 1895)

John Zachary Junior moved to Canada where he worked as a clerk and he used the name John Reilly when he enlisted at Winnipeg on 12 January 1916.  In his attestation papers it was noted that he was 5 feet 6 inches tall with a fair complexion, brown eyes and brown hair.  In January 1917 he ‘solemnly and sincerely declared’ that the surname Reilly was incorrect, and his real surname was Zachary.  He cited as his next-of-kin his sister, Mrs J.R.A. Jones of Lake Francis, Manitoba.

Private John Zachary (No. 830497) arrived in England aboard the SS Olympic in November 1916.

During the Great War, Private John Zachary (No. 830497) served with the 8th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (Manitoba Regiment).  He was 31 when he died on 5 August 1917 and was buried in Bully-Grenay Communal Cemetery, British Extension, France.  There is an inscription on his CWGC headstone:


His brother, Charles Stephenson Zachary, served during the First World War. He served as a Corporal in the 6th Royal Highlanders (Black Watch), then as a Second Lieutenant in the 17th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles and then as a Driver in the Transport Section of the Australian Imperial Force.

John Zachary’s father died on 22 November 1935 in Liverpool.

Private John Zachary is commemorated on the Canadian Virtual War Memorial (CVWM); in the Canadian First World War Book of Remembrance (Page 355) and in the Belfast Book of Honour (Page 680).