Sophia Gilson
and her two sons

This grave typifies the importance of cemeteries as historical and genealogical resources. I do not know who Sophia Gilson was, but I do know a lot about her life from her grave. In fact, the only things I know about her, I learned from her grave.

We know that Sophia had a son who died in infancy, we know that her husband (who probably never knew his son) was killed in World War I at the battle of Paschendaele and we know that she had a second son who was in the RCAF and was killed in action during World War II. Her epitaph says it all; "A COURAGEOUS MOTHER".

Captain William Gilson's name is commemorated on the Menin Gate in Ypres, one of the most striking memorials to those who fell in the "War to end all Wars". He is buried somewhere in Flanders, the location of his grave is not known. Her son, Edmond, is buried in France.

Next mother's day, pause a moment and think of Sophia Gilson. Next father's day, think of Captain Gilson.

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