10 November 2018
Leonard Charles Mackenzie was born at Twickenham on 16 May 1896 (or 1895) to Mr and Mrs James Leonard Mackenzie. His father is recorded as living at Ravine Junkins, Alberta, at the end of the First World War, by which time Mrs Mackenzie (née Bennewith) had died but the family were associated with India, Canada and/or England (London and Devon) at various times.
In the 1901 census two brothers, Robert Ross and John Alfred were staying with their great aunt Helen Mackenzie at Abergeldie, Knole Road, Bournemouth. The 1901 return for Pretoria Maisonettes, 2, Mitcham, Croydon includes a Leonard C Mackenzie age 4 with his father James L Mackenzie (born 1868 in India) and Ellen M Mackenzie.
In 1911 a Leonard Mackenzie (born in Twickenham) is at boarding school in Crediton, Devon. His younger brother John Alfred Arthur Mackenzie, age 13, is staying with his aunt Anne, Alice and Jessie Mackenzie (all born in India) at 21 Knole Road, Bournemouth.
Leonard enrolled at Harper Adams on 7 October 1912, aged 17, with the intention of farming in Canada. At the time of his enrolment his address was again recorded as Inglewood, Totnes Road, Newton Abbott, Devon.
He was awarded the College certificate in 1914 and left on 18 July 1914 when the register records he achieved his ambition and left for Canada.
Leonard enlisted with the 7th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (624367) on 10 January 1916 at Wainwright, Alberta, Canada and died on 10 November 1917, age 21.
He is remembered with honour at the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 18 - 28 – 30)
From October 1914 to October 1918, five major offensives occurred at Ypres (now Ieper) in Belgium. By the time the last shells fell in Ypres in October 1918, nearly 200,000 Commonwealth servicemen had been killed.
The Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial bears the names of more than 54,000 soldiers from the forces of Australia, Canada, India, South Africa and United Kingdom who died in the Salient and who have no known grave.
Every evening since 1928, at 8pm buglers sound the Last Post. The ceremony has become part of the daily life of Ieper and traffic is stopped from passing through the memorial.