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b BRIGHTON 1942 Canadian Walter Hill & unk Mother

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Catherine Report 17 Jun 2013 15:02

Looking for someone born and registered in Brighton England in the summer of 1942, who thinks his or her father may have been the young Canadian soldier Walter HILL. Walter had several children in the UK in the 1940s and at least three more later on in Canada. We are in touch now and have reason to believe Walter fathered a baby likely born and registered in the Brighton area in the 2nd or 3rd quarter of 1942. Walter went looking for his older children before he died in the 1980s, but was unable to find them all. Maybe we can be reunited now. Some of us have verified our family by dna testing. It has been a long trail and a wonderful experience to reconnect, discover uncanny likenesses and learn more about our family in general and our father in particular, no matter how much water passed under the bridge. If you think you might be related to Walter, either thjrough Brighton 1942 OR elsewhere, please do get in touch so we can compare notes. Thank you! Katie de Haan, The Netherlands

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it Report 17 Jun 2013 16:32

Chances are he isnt on any birth certs as the dad as he would have had to be at the registration and confirm he was the father.


brummiejan Report 17 Jun 2013 17:04

Shirley is right - but I guess you are hoping somebody might chance upon this, always worth a try. Have you looked to see if anyone has got Walter in their family tree?
There is one Hill birth last quarter `1942 in Brighton - an unusual name, so might be worth checking out on the off-chance. Easy to find here:



Catherine Report 17 Jun 2013 17:10

Yes, thanks, I realise that, Shirley. From army documents I know the Hospital where the baby was born had papers showing Walter Hill accepted paternity. Whether or not the baby was registered as Hill, or under the mother's maiden name OR EVEN under the mother's married name, I don't know yet. That's why I'm looking for people who think their father may have been Walter Hill but have or had no idea where or how to find him. It's taken a lifetime, and I started with only his first name, but I've found my father, his family and five of my half siblings. If there are more out there, we are doing our utmost to find them. If there is any doubt as to whether a person is or isnt related to us, (autosomal) dna testing can confirm or refute it.


brummiejan Report 17 Jun 2013 17:13

I don't know much (well, anything!) about this site, but might be worth trying if you haven't already:



Catherine Report 17 Jun 2013 17:14

Interesting, Jan. Thanks for taking the trouble. I'll check it out. After all, one of his daughters was given a name similar to his second name, so who knows?
I'd been focusing on 2nd and 3rd quarters up to now, and I have fifteen pages of those. Walter was applying to the army for support to the mother for the pending birth as early as May, but the birth could have been the final quarter. Katie.


brummiejan Report 17 Jun 2013 17:20

Well, if you stick to surname Hill and Brighton 2nd-4th quarters, (best to start simple and work up, so to speak!) there are only 4 births. Not to bad for elimination purposes if nothing else..
There is also one in the 1st quarter, again a reasonably unusual name.

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it Report 17 Jun 2013 17:33

well if he is on the birth cert it should show in the records

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it Report 17 Jun 2013 17:38

so do you know if the child was male or female?


Catherine Report 17 Jun 2013 18:40

Keeping it simple is good advice. Trouble is, at least three of his other children were registered under their mother's married name, including me, so HILL is only the offchance. Thanks for all the tips. I've tried a number of these approaches. Maybe one day I'll hit on the right one. Meantime I'll hope that someone sees this and knows of anyone who fits the bill. I've been down stranger avenues before. And maybe another puzzle piece will fall into place from a clue as more of his army papers come into my possession. I am quite familiar with Lost Cousins, a member and receive the newsletter. Thanks, Katie


Catherine Report 17 Jun 2013 18:49

And Shirley, no, I'm afraid I don't know whether the Brighton 42 child was male or female, though I've a hunch it may have been a boy. And I should emphasise that I'm also looking for anyone else born between 1940 and 1954 in the UK who thinks Canadian Walter Hill could have been their father. (And maybe in Canada thereafter.) With his track record, he may have had more children that even he didnt know about. Katie


Catherine Report 3 Dec 2013 16:16

Update: found Michael, son of Walter Hill. Thank you.


Catherine Report 3 Dec 2013 16:18

Update: found Michael, son of Walter Hill. Thank you. That is plus Norma and Bernadine that we'd already found. But there may be more in the UK or beyond, so anyone who feels Walter/Wally may have been their father, we'll be pleased to hear from you.


JoonieCloonie Report 5 Dec 2013 15:05

I just wanted to mention that I was looking at your other related thread the other day

and wondering whether you were in touch with the family in Canada and it seems you are (I was just going to mention that you can see Walter's death certificate on line and that sort of thing).

And that you and I look so much alike, even the same taste in tops (I have one just like it) that I might suspect I am a long-lost sister too, but wrong place and wrong time. :-) As you can see, I am relying on DNA to solve a mystery some day too but it is one of much more academic interest.

and wish you the best in your search.


JoonieCloonie Report 5 Dec 2013 15:54

also, for the Hill births in q2 and q4 1942 in Brighton ...

the 1st matches a marriage in 1941
the 2nd matches a marriage in 1939
the 3rd matches a marriage in 1929
(although the other births to that marriage were a decade earlier ...)
the 4th matches a marriage in 1937

so they can probably all be ruled out

From the army papers you have an actual date of birth? or a date when it was recorded which is at least thought to be close to the birthdate ... which is why you are looking for registrations q2 or q3 I imagine (if the birth was late q2 say ... and I'm not asking when it was, just wondering whether you have it).

looking at all births in Brighton in that quarter and searching for those with same mother's surname [edited to delete list, I see the right one now :-) ]

I'm just thinking ... are you in touch with 'war babies' organizations for instance?

... whether it would be worth posting a list of the potential surnames somewhere, mentioning Brighton and just 'during the war' so as not to identify individuals, and asking whether anyone with one of those surnames is looking for a father who may have been a Canadian serviceman.

of course this does assume that the mother was not a married woman who registered the child in her husband's surname (unless the child was told the real situation and is searching).

I'm sure you have investigated every possibility under the sun ...

Some time ago I was reading about someone looking for a Canadian serviceman father and it was mentioned that the Canadian military will forward queries to the man's last known address. Do you know whether such queries would now go to his Canadian family, in case a child did look for him?


Catherine Report 6 Dec 2013 13:35

Thank you for your help Joonie. Apologies: my last message may not have been clear enough. We have now FOUND my half brother: 'Brighton 42', who turned out to be Mike. Sadly, Mike died last year before we were able to find him...we are now getting to know his children and extended family. Once I got hold of Mike's army file, I could move forward and I found him recorded under Cadwallader, his mother's name by marriage. Research from there tells me he also has a full brother born some years later in Kent, who is my half brother as well. That takes me to eight full or half siblings and counting. Up to now though, all these children - including me and except the three he raised in Canada - were registered under the mother's married name. So no chance of finding them under Hill. But you never know... Maybe this is it, but there may be more so we'll keep looking, in the UK, Canada and maybe coastal Belgium or the Netherlands. Thanks for thinking along, Katie in The Netherlands


Catherine Report 6 Dec 2013 13:56

And Shirley and Brummiejan thanks too...we had no idea whether a boy or girl until we found him, but one of his later partners thought there might be a Mike and now we know she was right. Sad he died before we could link up. I don't think he ever had any idea who his father was. Our dad was also messing about on a boat in the Thames Estuary for a year or two, late forties early fifties, Burnham on Crouch, Ramsgate, Thanet, Canvey Island areas and finally sold the boat to someone in coastal Belgium. Plenty of possibilities for more liaisons, before he returned to Canada in 1953 and met his future partners, one or two of whom were from the Cree Indian and Inuit comunities. I had to wait a lifetime to find my father's family but it has been worth the wait. Quite a trail. And whatever else I might think of my dad's life story, boring it is not!


JoonieCloonie Report 6 Dec 2013 14:22

Ah, I think I was confusing the two threads maybe. :-) (and yes, didn't realize that 'Mike' was the person sought rather than a separate update) That is great news indeed and you have done an amazing job of bringing the family together. It's a story that needs to be well preserved for the (many!) members of later generations!

Just in case of others, I do wonder whether you have been in touch with the Canadian military authorities about passing on inquiries to family.