Cecil Roy Brown was born on September 5, 1888, in Thorburn, Pictou County, Nova Scotia, the son of W.E.G. and Jane (Good) Brown. Prior to the war he worked as a dry goods clerk for C.B. Hume’s Department Store and was well known in Revelstoke. He was a member of ‘D’ Company, 102nd Battalion, Rocky Mountain Rangers.
He enlisted on November 9, 1914 at Victoria as part of the Second Contingent of Canadian Volunteers. His regimental number was 77497. At the time of enlistment he was 26 years old. He was 5’ 6 ½ inches tall, single, with brown eyes and black hair. His religious affiliation was Baptist.
After some training in Victoria, the Revelstoke boys of the 30th Battalion, including Cecil Roy Brown, passed through Revelstoke in February 1915 on their way east.
On May 21, 1915 Private Cecil Roy Brown was killed in action. He was 26 years old. At the time of his death he was serving as a Private with the 15th Battalion of the Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario) Regiment. Around this time Canadian troops were involved in the battle for Festubert and he may have lost his life in this battle. He was reported as missing or a prisoner of war for some months after May 1915. A letter home from one of his friends noted that many of Cecil’s friends at the front were worried over the fact that his body was never found. Cecil’s mother wrote to the Revelstoke Red Cross in November of 1916 asking if anyone had information on her son. A returned soldier claimed to have seen him after he was taken prisoner but none of these reports were ever confirmed.
Today Cecil Roy Brown is one of the 11,000 Canadian soldiers listed as “missing, presumed dead” in the Great War memorialized at the Vimy Memorial.
Cecil Brown was listed on the St. John’s Presbyterian Church of Revelstoke Honor Roll and the YMCA Honor Roll. His name is inscribed on the Courthouse and Cenotaph plaques.