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Looking details of my father John Kenneth Kerr.

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


Sandra Report 14 Apr 2018 01:13

I'm not too hopeful he was in the military at all now. There are way too many Kerrs. Never did I think a few years ago that I would be sitting here with a Kerr family which has risen from 33 to having a tree with almost 400! Not bad considering my Mckee side of the family have still to be discovered. It's like they were wiped out by some bizarre event!


JoonieCloonie Report 14 Apr 2018 00:24

And remember it was spelled McCRADY on his birth reg. :-)

(Probably how it is pronounced?)

I will be watching for news of his naval records, in 10 months. My stars willing!

They will, hopefully, be interesting.


ArgyllGran Report 13 Apr 2018 17:33

The registrar probably wrote it the way he assumed it to be spelled..


Sandra Report 13 Apr 2018 14:11

Well I managed to add another 9 relatives to my tree today. Unfortunately they are all preceeding John McCreadie Kerr. Interestingly his family name goes back 4 generations and is always spelt MCCREADY. I had a look at his birth certificate and sure enough my grandfather's name is spelt MCCREADY, not the McCreadie on his marriage certificate, ships passenger records or death certificate!!


JoonieCloonie Report 12 Apr 2018 22:13

Serendipity by google, then! Keep us posted. :-)


Sandra Report 12 Apr 2018 13:49

These are my relatives and I am a member of My Heritage. I don't understand why they didn't come through as a match. I have contacted the site manager to ask for access.


JoonieCloonie Report 11 Apr 2018 23:15

Well given the DNA match to the people who are sure - are they? - of their connection to John 1900, and the fact that the BC death matches his name and birthday, I think we can think that the BC death is your John.

I wonder whether Delores, though, was Blanch's daughter and not John's, and she and he got together later ...

There is still every possibility that they had other children as well; we just don't have access to that information.

I didn't follow the Scottish ancestry info carefully, but I wonder whether this might give a good picture of it.

it shows:

great-grandfather John McCready Kerr
grandfather Angus Kerr (with a brother John McCready Fraser Kerr)
father Colin Kerr (with a brother John McCready)

Can't see more w/o subscribing.


Sandra Report 11 Apr 2018 21:50

Wow you have both done some fantastic work. I can't thank you enough. Its so frustrating not knowing where the real John McCreadie died and if he was the one who married Blanche and had a daughter!!!


JoonieCloonie Report 11 Apr 2018 19:22

So many @#$% John Kerrs!

For Blanch to be in Chilliwack in 1935 ... and daughter Delores to be born in Ottawa (half a continent away) in 1936 ... many things to boggle the mind.

Thanks! (again, ha)


ArgyllGran Report 11 Apr 2018 17:33

Re Chilliwack -
I don't know if this has been posted before or not -

John Kerr
in the Canada, WWI CEF Attestation Papers, 1914-1918
Name: John Kerr
Birth Date: 17 Nov 1885
Birth Location: Tern, Torfarshire [Fern, Forfarshire]
Residence: Post Office, Chilliwack, British Columbia
Relative: William Kerr
Relationship: Father
Father's address: Drum, Arnhall, Fettercairn, Kincardineshire
Regiment Number: 2203339
Date of attestation: 16 Feb 1917

So if that's the same man as in1935, he's not the one we want.

He had flat feet and was considered "fit for forestry or R R Construction battalion only".


ArgyllGran Report 11 Apr 2018 17:26

Yes, on page 7 - this thread's getting too long for comfort!

Copied again here:

Mias [Miss ] Blanch Gushue
in the Canada, Voters Lists, 1935-1980
Name: Mias [Miss ] Blanch Gushue
Occupation: Cw [saleswoman]
Year: 1935
Location: Fraser Valley, British Columbia, Canada
Electoral District: Fraser Valley

Again, a rural community, so no address other than Chilliwack - at that time an agricultural community in the Fraser Valley - per Wikipedia.

There was also a John Kerr, mechanic, in Chilliwack in 1935.
Also a Mrs John Kerr, married woman.

With no addresses, it's impossible to know who was living with whom.
One would assume Mr and Mrs John Kerr were together - but maybe not!


JoonieCloonie Report 11 Apr 2018 17:12

ArgyllGran, point me if I'm mistaken, but did you check the Blanch Gushue in Fraser Valley on the 1935 voters' list?

Just on the chance that she is living with someone useful.

I'm so sorry that I haven't renewed my worldwide sub at Ancestry in order to do this (I only have access to UK at present) ... I have just been using the Visa too much in the last couple of months on bits and pieces for the kitchen and bathroom renovations that I have got to get done very soon. :-)


JoonieCloonie Report 11 Apr 2018 16:51

Thanks again ArgyllGran!

Our John would not have been retired in 1935, and evidently been a WWI veteran, so not them.

(He was probably John Bowerman Kerr, who was in the CEF and lived at the time very close to the address on the 1935 voters' list, married to Myrtle. They are buried together as shown at findagrave, and she is alone on later voters' lists.)

So many John Kerrs ... findagrave has a half-dozen in Canada who died in 1946, alone!


ArgyllGran Report 11 Apr 2018 16:03

Re the John Kerrs on the Ottawa voters' list - nothing useful:

John Kerr 1935 Ottawa , Ontario - retired
Mrs John Kerr 1935 Ottawa , Ontario - married woman
at 331 East Somerset

John Kerr 1940 Ottawa , Ontario - unemployed
Mrs John Kerr 1940 Ottawa , Ontario - [it doesn't say anything about her]
at 343 Flora Street

John Kerr 1945 Ottawa , Ontario - patient at Perley Home, Aylmer Avenue.

History of the Perley Home;

In 1897, the heirs of the late William G. Perley conveyed the family property on Wellington St. for the care of persons who needed shelter and treatment over an extended period.
When the Perley Home’s property was expropriated in 1912, a new facility was built on Aylmer Avenue.
By 1941 the Perley’s capacity had grown to 95 beds, and in the 1950s it was further expanded to 215 beds. As a hospital, the Perley took on added responsibilities for physiotherapy and orthopaedic rehabilitation.
The Rideau Veterans Home (RVH) was built by the federal government as a temporary residence for the rehabilitation of service personnel returning from the Second World War. It gradually grew into a 139-bed home for the aged.


JoonieCloonie Report 11 Apr 2018 14:00

Just a little correction to the record here.

I had failed to notice that there are two different gravestones pictured on the findagrave memorial page.

In the first picture, the gravestone itself says "C.E.F."

i.e. that that John was in the Canadian Expeditionary Forces in WWI.

Also, the date of death is 7 Feb 1946 which is close but not correct for your John.

The info in the Bio section of the memorial page indicates the WWI service. The member who created the page then, six years later, added the picture of your John's grave and the "flower" giving the completely incorrect information (i.e. it is not information about the John that the page is actually about, and it is not correct about your John since your John was not in the RCN in WWI):

"A/Cook John McCready Kerr served with the Royal Canadian Navy during WW1 of 1914-18"

The other grave, the John Kerr who was in the CEF in WWI, is this person:

Event Type: Death
Registration Number: 1946-09-002296
BC Archives Mfilm Number: B13189
GSU Mfilm Number: 2032421
>> Event Date (YYYY-MM-DD): 1946-02-07
Event Place: VANCOUVER
>> Age at Death: 73
Vital Stat Images(s): 004437669_02084.jpg

He is this person:
(He was actually born in Scotland but an immigrant to the US. Many men came north to sign up, before the US entered the war.)

The person who created the memorial page has done a terrible job, and has simply mashed together two different graves of two different people. He seems to have decided that a nudge was as good as a wink.

Your John's gravestone does say "R.C.N.", i.e. Royal Canadian Navy. And the fact that it is a flat stone with the maple leaf engraved, in the standardized format, with the "Lest We Forget" motto, indicates that the grave is in the veterans' section of the cemetery. So it is possible that he was in WWII, but he may have been in the navy at any other time.

Since his grave is in the veterans' section, no family members would be buried with/near him.

There is actually a duplicate page for the other John, with the correct information,
so the member who created the page for the other John that he has added your John to should just convert that page to a page for your John, by removing the info about the other John, removing the "flower" about your John, and replacing the photo for the page with the one of your John's grave. Once he does that and transfers the page to you, you can add the correct bio information.

If you like, I can organize that for you :-)

Just register with findagrave and give me a link to your member page, and I'll ask him to transfer the page to me and give me permission to fix it up by switching the photos, so that I can then transfer it to you to edit with correct information, and he can remove his "flower".


ArgyllGran Report 11 Apr 2018 09:39

Duncan I McLean in the telephone directories -

He's in the directories from 1995 up to 2002, at first in Langley, BC, and then in Maple Ridge, BC

If relevant, there's a Duncan J McLean (not an "I", so probably not the right person) in Kamloops (where Delores died) from 1996 to 1999, at {number deleted in case still there] Viking.
That time-span involves more than one record, and the middle initial is J each time, so probably not a mistranscription - but you never know.

Frustratingly, I have to go out now. Will come back to this in the evening!

there's also a D I Maclean in North Vancouver in 1995-6, at [deleted number in case still there] Lynn Valley.


JoonieCloonie Report 11 Apr 2018 02:47

One more Canada voters' list request -- since Delores was born in Ottawa in 1936.

John Kerr 1935 Ottawa , Ontario
Mrs John Kerr 1935 Ottawa , Ontario

John Kerr 1940 Ottawa , Ontario
Mrs John Kerr 1940 Ottawa , Ontario

John Kerr 1945 Ottawa , Ontario

Since John's death cert states he was in BC since 1936, that is not likely them.

So ... how about

John Kerr 1940 Fraser Valley, British Columbia
Mrs John Kerr 1940 Fraser Valley, British Columbia


... and one more Worldwide request

Canadian telephone directories

Duncan I McLean address city British Columbia

There does not seem to be a current match for that at

For info, if you look at the map here
you can see Fraser Valley outlined in pink, and Kamloops (where Delores died) to the east.


JoonieCloonie Report 11 Apr 2018 02:28

The reason that the death cert shows Blanche Gushue is that the form asks for maiden name.

There is a birth certificate for Delores - it would be in Ontario - but it is not publicly accessible. The cutoff is 100 years, so any births after 1918 are not currently available on line.

Since you have her death certificate on line, over 50 years ago, you might be able to obtain her birth certificate from Ontario. You know that drill!!

Delores Mary Kerr McLean was born in Ottawa in 1936. The latest Ottawa city directory available on line is 1923, so too early to find John or Blanche there. (I checked it.)

Unfortunately I just have not found any info or record relating to Delores's husband, through whom any children she had, or any siblings, might be traced. Since Delores was born in 1936, Duncan could still be living.

The same with a marriage certificate -- If there was a marriage of John Kerr and Blanch Gushue, the marriage could be after the cutoff year for public access, in both Ontario and BC. Remember that Canada (and Australia, e.g.) are not like England and Scotland. This information is considered to be personal and is protected by privacy legislation while individuals are or could be living. And that is if there was a marriage. He may not have married bigamously.

The parent discrepancies, I don't know. Blanche may not have known, since John was estranged from his family.

I would say that the info on the findagrave memorial about the WWI Navy and military service is all suspect. Good idea to join findagrave and ask the person who made the page, and added that info, where it was obtained.

Is that where your cousin got the info passed on to you?

There were one heck of a lot of John Kerrs in the Canadian Expeditionary Forces:

But none seems to have a matching DOB and I didn't feel like checking each attestation. :-)
I don't think he was in Canada during WWI though? Immigrated 1919, I think it was? -- That is the thing that is wrong with the info that he was in the CEF, along with his age (only turned 18 in 1918). I suppose he could have been in the RCN at some point after WWI, before or after his son was born in Toronto.

I am still at sea with much of this.
Is it absolutely certain that he was John McCready Kerr with the parents you named?
Is it absolutely certain that he was the John who died in 1946?

This is the birth that you say

M 1900
644/3 1380

but there was also the other

M 1902
644/11 838

and as GlasgowLass said:
Can anyone be certain which one of these 2 men emigrated to Canada?

Does your DNA match have reliable family records, and that is the basis for selecting the older one?


age 72
mother TAYLOR
date of death 1974
508/ 269

So that that is the 1902 John = the basis for the 1900 John being yours.

Ahaha, I have found online BC directories.


We know that their address when John died was
5958 East Hastings Street, Vancouver

... and the addresses in the directory go only up to 3695 :-P :-P :-P

Looking by name, the only John M Kerr shown is Chief Steward, CNSS (Canadian National Steamships Co, I assume), with no address, and no wife's name in parentheses.

There are 2 Gushues: Florence E, widow, and William with wife (I think I found he was born in the US when I looked at other death certs, not sure).

Ah here we are -- the higher nunbers on East Hastings were in Burnaby, not Vancouver. Which is what the death cert says, now that I check ...

5958 East Hastings is the Rainbow Auto Lodge -- i.e. a motel.

AAAAArgh. John and Blance could have been living there -- given post-WWII housing shortages -- or have come there from anywhere.

in 1947, the Blanche E Kerr, widow, retired, who was on the voters' lists, is at 2137 W 1st, Greater Vancouver.

There were two completely different householders at that address in 1945 and 1946.

Blanche E is not listed in 1945. I scanned through the Kerrs in both places in 1945 and don't see a Mr Kerr with wife Blanche.

(This is painstaking. The directory for each year has to be opened, then the page found for the right surname, or right address, and the list checked.)

In 1946, John M is still CNSS, roomer, address 1215 W 15th.

In 1947, John M is still CNSS, no address given.

Alrighty then -- in 1939, that John M Kerr, the CNSS steward, is married to Jessie A.
Ditto in 1942.
So this would seem NOT to be our man.

... unless, like my paternal grandfather, and my maternal great-grandfather's grand-nephew, he had a heart attack while at a hotel with a woman other than his wife ...

And try as I might, I can't find our man or Blanche Gushue anywhere.

If the @#$% BC archives would work for me, I might find her death, but then she may not have died there anyway.

Oh my. I have found the death of Blanche Elizabeth Kerr, by going through all Kerr deaths alphabetically.
She is NOT John's wife Blanche Gushue. She was born in Massachusetts and her husband was George Kerr.

The most recent directory available on line is 1955, and I don't see Delores's husband anywhere.
There is a Dolores Kerr, cashier, in New Westminster.
She is a roomer, and I think the address shows as occupied by a Mrs. Lyons. (The images are very bad.)

So there is some ruling out and nothing more.
>> The widowed Blanche E Kerr is not Blanche Gushue.
>> The John M Kerr who worked for Canadian National Steamships is not your John Kerr.

The only thing we know is that

Blanch Gushue 1935 Fraser Valley, British Columbia

on the voters' list has got to be your Blanch, but I guess the source does not tell us any more.

And here I stand down.


Sandra Report 10 Apr 2018 23:55

OMG I am so confused by all this. My grandfather's father was named Colin Kerr, died 1937. His mother was Mary Kerr born Neilson. His date of death is correct along with the Blanch. I don't understand why the parents names are wrong, or his dob, or the year he came to Canada, which was 1925.Maybe Blanch was guessing most of this but I am totally confused. I wonder why there is no marriage certificate for them, or birth certificate for the daughter Dolores!
Thank you both so much for all this hard work. You have been very busy.


ArgyllGran Report 10 Apr 2018 19:07

There are no addresses for the Brigus Junction entries - it looks like just a small settlement, so houses wouldn't have needed individual addresses.