Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: John Morrow “Jack” McGrath (1913-2004)

Veteran, community activist.

Born at Winnipeg on 15 June 1913, son of Andrew McGrath (1883-?) and Isabella Marnoch Porter (1889-1918), in 1939 he enlisted for service in the Second World War. He was immediately sent overseas with the Canadian Signals Corps, where he was later part of D-Day operations. After his return to Winnipeg in 1945, he married Marie Bolton (1917-2008), daughter of Vernon and Anna Bolton, with whom he went on to have three children. For 35 years, he was employed with Western Flyer Coach, retiring in 1979.

Proud of his military service to his country, he joined Winnipeg’s Army and Navy and Air Force Veterans Rockwood Unit 303, founded in 1950, and was honorary president from 2000 until his death. On behalf of Rockwood Unit 303, he became a volunteer driver for the Hugo Convalescent Home and, until the day of his passing, a volunteer pianist there, as well as at Deer Lodge Centre. ANAVETS Canada awarded him a Life Membership in 1992 “in consideration of outstanding service since 1974.” In 1996 he received a Certificate of Appreciation from Rockwood Unit 303 “for continuous service and comfort to veterans at Deer Lodge Centre, Hugo Street Convalescent Home and in our own club.” His long-standing volunteer activities later resulted in a Winnipeg Community Service Award, a Winnipeg Police Service Certificate of Appreciation “in recognition of the outstanding commitment and support you have shown for the Winnipeg Police Service and the citizens of Winnipeg,” and the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal (2002).

He died at Winnipeg on 11 August 2004.

Sources:

Birth registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 14 August 2004.

Obituary [Marie McGrath], Winnipeg Free Press, 7 June 2008.

ANAVETS Rockwood Unit 303, 303rockwood.com.

This page was prepared by Lois Braun.

Page revised: 31 October 2020

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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