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Wartime Heritage ASSOCIATION
Remembering WWII Nova Scotia Casualties
Name: Thomas Wellington MacLaughlin Rank: Rifleman Service No: F/40988 Service: Royal Rifles of Canada, R.C.I.C. Date of Birth: June 16, 1907 Place of Birth: Bass River, Colchester Co., NS Date of Enlistment: August 2, 1940 Place of Enlistment: Aldershot, NS Address At Enlistment: Bass River, Colchester Co., NS Age at Enlistment: 33 Height: 6 feet, 3 inches Complexion: Fair Eyes: Blue Hair: Brown Marital Status: Single Trade: Farming/Labourer Religion: United Church Next of Kin: Wellington MacLaughlin (Grandfather) Bass River, Colchester Co., NS Date of Death: November 28, 1942 Age at Death: 35 Memorial: Sai Wan War Cemetery, Hong Kong Commemorated on Page 97 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance Displayed in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower in Ottawa on March 2. Thomas was the grandson of Wellington McLaughlin and son of Margaret (MacLaughlin) Morris of Bass River, Nova Scotia. At a very young age, Thomas went to live with his grandfather, Wellington MacLaughlin. He worked on his grandfather’s farm until his enlistment. At enlistment his attestation paper recorded his name as Thomas Laughlin and his grandfather as his father. His name was officially changed to MacLaughlin on October 18, 1940. He initially enlisted with the West Nova Scotia Regiment and taken on strength with that Regiment at Aldershot on August 2, 1940. On November 28, 1940 he was transferred to the Royal Rifles of Canada, R.C.I.C. On December 11, 1940 he sailed from Canada to Newfoundland with he Royal Rifles of Canada as part of “W” Force. They returned to Canada on August 18, 1941 and were stationed at Valcartier. Now part of “C” Force the Royal Rifles of Canada travelled by CNR troop train arriving in Vancouver on October 27, 1940 and embarked from there on HMCS Prince Robert. The Canadians arrived in Hong Kong on November 16, 1941. On arrival, the troops were quartered at Nanking Barracks, Sham Shui Po Camp, in Kowloon and served in defence of the British Colony of Hong Kong until the British surrender on December 25, 1941. Taken as a prisoner of war at the fall of Hong Kong, Thomas was interned at Camp Stanley [Camp ID HK-SM-01], Fort Stanley, Hong Kong Island. He was moved to Camp North Point [Camp ID HK-NP-01], North Point, Hong Kong Island on December 30 where he remained until September 26, 1942. On that date he was transferred to Camp Shamshuipo [Camp ID HK-SA-02], Kowloon, Hong Kong. Eleven months later, at 11:30 pm, on November 28, 1942, he died of diphtheria and acute enteritis (inflammation of the small intestine commonly caused by contaminated food or drink). He was buried in the Argyle Street Cemetery, Hong Kong. In 1947, he was re-buried in the Sai Wan War Cemetery, Hong Kong. Sources and Information: Veterans Affairs Canada findagrave.com
Thomas MacLaughlin
HMCS Prince Robert