Soldier Spotlight: Ray Carleton

Image: Bird’s eye view of Hythe, Alberta seen from the south-west in 1929. The Donald Hotel is on the far right. 1929 (SPRA 610.01.20)

Ray was born in Keremeos BC, the son of Ben and Ellen Carleton, and one of 8 siblings. The family moved to Saskatchewan in 1922 where they farmed. The drought hit in the late 20’s, so they moved to the Goodfare AB area and continued farming in 1929. They left the area in 1935 and returned to Keremeos where Ray settled. In 1940 he joined the Canadian Armoured Corps and was posted overseas. According to Ray, he had some “harrowing experiences” while being a Prisoner of War. Fortunately he was able to escape, and he was awarded the “Oak leaf and Cluster” for being the most escaped POW. After the war, Ray married Gertie Stevens from Hythe, the daughter of Charlie Stevens. On December 4, 1946 he received a citation for distinguished service. Ray’s brother Lloyd also served overseas in WW II.

Source: Pioneer Round-Up pp. 70-71

Soldier Spotlight highlights veterans from the Archives’ online Soldiers’ Memorial. Each week, our volunteers select a remarkable individual to showcase in this blog series. The Soldiers’ Memorial commemorates more than 1,100 WWI veterans and 2,300 WWII veterans from our region. Three dedicated volunteers have contributed over 1,200 hours to this project by researching and writing biographies. Our goal is to have all South Peace soldiers acknowledged for their service. If you know of someone who lived in the South Peace and should be listed on the Memorial, or would like to get involved by researching a local veteran, please contact the Archives.