UCC Remembers Logo

Discover the stories and remember the lives of UCC
Old Boys who gave the ultimate sacrifice in the Great War.

Captain George Crowther Ryerson ’02

Died: April 23, 1915

George Crowther Ryerson was the son of Dr. G. Stirling Ryerson, College Street, and the eldest of four brothers who are all Old Boys of the College. His early education was received at the Model School, and he entered the College in 1898 at the age of 14.

Four years later he went to the University as a student in the Faculty of Applied Science. After three years at Varsity his passion for life in the open, which was always one of his chief characteristics, led him to spend a year in the lumber camps of Northern Ontario. In 1906 he returned to Toronto and went into the real estate business with the firm of Stinson and Hollwey. Two years later he formed with Mr. W. G. Mitchell the firm of Mitchell & Ryerson, insurance brokers, and at the time the war broke out the firm had built up a large and lucrative business.

His military career began in 1908 when he obtained a commission in the 10th Royal Grenadiers, and he held the rank of captain in that regiment when he offered his services for the First Canadian Contingent. He was given command of a company in the 3rd Battalion, and on reaching France was promoted to Major. At the battle of Langemarck he was moving forward from a trench with a detachment of reliefs when he was struck by a rifle bullet and died about half an hour afterwards.

This great world-war was always the overshadowing thing on his horizon, and for years he devoted a great deal of his spare time to the necessary preparations for it. At times he seemed to have a premonition that when the war came it would cost him his life, but he always seemed ready to make the sacrifice. His death was such as he would have chosen, but by his death the Empire has lost a loyal, big-hearted, gentle-minded, brave, strong son.

College Times (Summer 1915) pg. 9-10


More information about Captain George Crowther Ryerson ’02 can be found at:

Upper Canada College Roll of Service 1914-1919

The Canadian Virtual War Memorial

University of Toronto Roll of Service 1914-1918

Canadian Great War Project

Canada At War

The Toronto World (April 26, 1915)

Find A Grave


Additional information:

Old Boys Major W. Beverley Crowther and his brother, Second Lieutenant Stanley Lorne Crowther, were first cousins to Captain George Crowther Ryerson and also perished in the Great War.