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

Major Joseph Donaldson Simpson ’06

Died: October 11, 1918

Major J. D. Simpson, M.C. of 12 Admiral Road was at U.C.C. from 1901-1906. After leaving College he took his B.A. at Toronto University and became a member of the Canada Board Corporation, 59 Yonge St. He was a Lieut, in the 11th Battalion, 1st C.E.F., quickly gained his Captaincy, and afterwards was attached to the 15th Battalion as Major; in 1916 he was awarded the M.C.

Mrs. Simpson has received the following letter :

44th Infantry Brigade. 23rd October, 1918.

Dear Mrs. Simpson :

I am writing to sympathize very deeply in the loss of your son, Major J. D. Simpson, whom we all loved and respected so much. He had been acting as my Brigade Major only a few weeks, but during that time he had quite won the hearts of all officers and men in the Brigade. He was always so cheery and bright and had such great personal charm that he made an ideal staff officer. It will be some comfort for you to know that he can have suffered no pain, as he was struck in the forehead by a piece of shell and never regained consciousness. We buried him in a little graveyard near the Village of Honchin, the buglers of the Gordon Highlanders sounded the Last Post over his grave and the pipers played their last salute.

Yours very sincerely,
Noel Thomson,
Brigadier General.

College Times (Summer 1918) pg. 28-29


More information about Major Joseph Donaldson Simpson ’06 can be found at:

Upper Canada College Roll of Service 1914-1919

Canadian Virtual War Memorial

Canadian Great War Project

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Canada At War

The Royal British Legion – Every Man Remembered

The Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies

University of Toronto Roll of Service, 1914-1918

University of Toronto Monthly

The Varsity War Supplement 1918