Edward Carter Eaton 458507

Complete service file available HERE

Edward Eaton was born in Montreal on September 17, 1898, the son of Edward C. & Isabella (Carter) Eaton. Edward C died in 1911. Edward was raised by his widowed mother Isabella

He joined the 60th Battalion on August 11, 1915. He lied about his age stating he was born in 1896 and Major Pavey agreed he looked 18 yrs 11 month old. In fact he was 16 yrs 11 months old. Being 18 meant he did not have to have his mothers permission to join.

Edward was assigned to A Company and served in the signal section. During the battalion’s time on the Somme Edward was in the dugout caves at Bouzincourt, north west of Albert and inscribed his name in the tunnel wall.

On January 12, 1917 he was promoted to Lance Corporal. One month later, on the 14th of February, he was transferred to the Canadian Training Depot at Shorncliffe to attend courses at the Canadian Military School at Beckhill to become an officer. He successfully completed the course and on April 28, 1917 he was promoted to Temporary Lieutenant and transferred to the 19th Reserve Battalion. He served with the 19th until June 26 when he was transferred to the Saskatchewan Regimental Depot

On October 23, 1917 he was seconded for duty with the Royal Flying Corps. This was reported in the London Gazette (LG 30377) on November 13, 1917. At the same time he was Appointed Flying Officer (LG 30403 November 28, 1917)

On November 10th he proceeded to France and was attached to the 65th Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps where he flew the legendary Sopwith Camel and according to the website theareodrome.com he was credited with 5 kills, making him an ACE.

On June 26, 1918 Eaton was part of a five plane formation that left the aerodrome at 7:30pm. At 8:30 they attacked nine enemy planes north of Albert. Lt Eaton was last seen going down under control with smoke coming out of his plane. He was the twenty fifth aircraft shot down by German Ace Fritz Rumey

The next day he was reported missing in action and struck of strength of the 65th Squadron. On the 24th of July good news arrived. Edward Eaton was reported to be a Prisoner of War and in good health. Sadly the news was actually about a British officer with the same name so Canadian Edward Eaton was put back on the missing list. On August 7th the authorities received word through German sources that Lt Edward Carter Eaton had died.

In August 1920 when No 119 Burial Company was clearing the battlefields east of Bouzincourt, France, the body of an “Unknown Officer of the Royal Flying Corps” was found at map reference 57D.W16.a.7.5. along with the number of his aeroplane – O/6630. The searchers were able to identify the body as that of Lt Edward Carter Eaton. Hew as buried at Buzincourt Ridge Cemetery.

His mother Isabella had remarried in 1920 and was now Mrs James Hansen Sonne. She added an inscription on his headstone “UNTO THEE O LORD DO I LIFT UP MY SOUL” Edward Eaton was 19 years 4 months old at the time of his death.