Edward Quinton was born November 1, 1885 at Needham Market, Suffolk, England. His father Jesse Quinton was living in England in 1914. Edward Quinton was working as a locomotive fireman for the Canadian Pacific Railroad in Revelstoke when war broke out. He was one of 69 men who immediately volunteered to serve.
Edward Quinton signed his enlistment papers on September 23, 1914 at Valcartier, Quebec. His regimental number was 17048. He had enlisted with the First Contingent of Canadian Volunteers to serve in France. He was almost 29 years old, single, 5’ 8” tall with brown hair and greenish grey eyes. His religious affiliation was Methodist.
Edward Quinton was a survivor of the Canadian Army’s baptism of fire at the Second Battle of Ypres. A letter he sent back to Revelstoke describing his experiences was printed in the local paper May 26, 1915:
“I feel I have lived a long time since I wrote you last. The big battle was one long nightmare. The enemy simply rained shells over us, and came on us in droves; but still we held them back, men dropping on both sides like nine-pins. It is marvelous how cool a man feels when comrades are falling all around. He is facing death every minute. All our boys seemed quite calm, smoking cigarettes, and passing them along to one another; but after the reinforcements came the reaction set in and men shook hands with comrades whom they thought dead. What a pitiful few they were.”
Edward Quinton was a Private serving with the 7th Battalion, Canadian Infantry (British Columbia) Regiment and was temporarily transferred to the Canadian Military Police. He married Florence May Ree in Eastbourne, Sussex, England early in 1918. At the end of the war, he returned to Vancouver and was admitted to Shaughnessy Hospital where he died of pneumonia on February 28, 1919. He was 33 years old. He is buried at the Mountain View Cemetery, Vancouver, British Columbia. His wife moved to Savannah, Georgia, where she remarried and was known as Florence Elderson.
Edward Quinton’s name is inscribed as Quinten on the Courthouse and Cenotaph plaques as well as the YMCA Honor Roll.