407786 Pte. William Ager was born in Bedford, England, on October 17th, 1881, to Harry and Emma Ager, of Canning Street, Bedford.


The couple had nine known children: Fred (b1869), George (b1872), Annie (b1878), Amy (b1880), William (b1881), Fanny (b1884), Harry William (b1886) Mabel (b1891) and Elsie (b1893).


Attending St. Paul's Infant School, in Bedford, William started school there on November 20th, 1888, and finished on January 1st, 1894, having been noted by trade at the tender age of 12 to be a "boot boy".


In late 1902, William, now a carpenter, married Eva Mary Prior of Bishops Stortford, in Hendon, Middlesex, and certainly by 1913, living at various addresses in north London (Tottenham, Edmonton, Willesden), the couple had five known children: Gwendoline Ivy (b1904 - d1982 (as Baxter)), Veronica Iris Eva (b1906 - d1993 (as Cooper)), Reginald Laurence (b1909), Clarence Victor (b1910) and Olive W.(b1912 - d1985 (as Higgins)).


The family emigrated to Canada in 1913, leaving Liverpool for Montreal on May 6th, aboard the White Star line's Dominion. The family settled in London, Ontario and William's trade was stated as joiner by this time.


William attested into the 33rd Battalion in London, Ontario on March 29th, 1915. He found himself back in England with the regiment on March 26th, 1916, aboard the S.S. Lapland, and on June 6th he was transferred to the 4th CMR amongst 206 men of the 33rd BN drafted in to make up the losses incurred by the 4th CMR in June 2nd's 'Battle for Mount Sorrel'.


The 4th CMR was involved in a push against Courcelette on September 15th, 1916, which saw platoon losses under heavy machine gun fire in the ultimately successful attack. Alas, at some point in that push, William was lost.


Pte. William Ager's body was not recovered and his name subsequently appears on the Vimy Memorial, Pas De Calais, France.






Biography credit: Mike Kavanagh