Andrew Royston RODGER

4th Canadian Mounted Rifles Battalion  

Rank & Number:      Private, 158174  

03 May 1898 (or 1897*) in Fairlie  

                        01 October 1916; Somme, France
                                (killed in action)  

                      Buried at Regina Trench Cemetery, France

was born 03 May 1898 (or 1897*) in Fairlie, and was the adopted son of Mr. and Mrs Andrew Rodger.  He was killed in action on 01 Oct 1916 at the Somme, France while employed as a runner carrying messages to the front line under heavy bombardment. 
Initially reported missing having last been seen heading for the dressing station after being wounded on 01 Oct 1916, he was later believed to have been killed before reaching it.  He is buried at Regina Trench Cemetery, Grandcourt, Somme, France, and commemorated on Fairlie War Memorial.  

In the 1911 Census, aged 12, he is living at Ferry Road, Fairlie, adopted son in the household of Helen Rodger (49, m. 20 years, no children).  The family appear to have emigrated shortly thereafter, because they appear in the Canadian Census taken in June 1911 - Andrew R. Rodger (son, aged 13, born Scotland) in the household of Andrew and Ellen Gray Rodger in Toronto South, Ontario, Canada.  
He is the nephew of Mary Dickie, The Row, Fairlie, who inserted an intimation in the Largs & Millport Weekly News “in memoriam” on 05 Oct 1918.  

* In the 1911 Canadian Census, his date of birth is given as 03 May 1898 which fits with the ages given in the censuses.  When he enlists, his date of birth is given as 03 May 1897 – possibly because he would have been under 18?              

Enlisted 17 Sep 1915 (occ. labourer, next of kin father); on 23 Oct 1915 the Largs and Millport Weekly News reported that he was undergoing training in Toronto.

Extracts from the Largs & Millport Weekly News:-  

23 October 1915        

Several of the Fairlie boys over the seas have answered the call.  Andrew Royston Rodger, who left the village four and a half years ago for Toronto, Canada, has joined the York Rangers, and is undergoing training in Toronto.   

9 December 1916       
Toll Of War; Fairlie Man Missing:  Pte. A.R. Rodger, Canadian Rifle Brigade, who has been missing since 1st October, is believed to have been killed on that date, as the following letter has been received from the Commanding Officer:-   
Dear Sir,  It is with the deepest regret that I have to inform you that 158174 Pte. A.R. Rodger has been missing since the engagement of October 1st, in which his battalion took part.  During an attack on the enemies’ lines he was wounded, and was last seen starting back to the dressing station.  As no report has been received of his passing through hospital, and in view of the extreme intensity of the artillery engagement of that date, I regret to state that he is believed to have been killed before reaching the dressing station.  I need not add how nobly he fought, and we honour him in the supreme sacrifice which we feel quite confident he has made.  With deepest sympathy – (Signed) W. Gordon, Lieut.-Colonel.
Pte. Rodger, who left Fairlie about five-and-a-half years ago for Canada, was the adopted son of Mr and Mrs Andrew Rodger, who are still remembered here.  

23 December 1916
(Photograph of) PRIVATE A.R. RODGER; Canadian Rifle Brigade: who, as reported a fortnight ago, has been posted missing since October 1st.  

5 October 1918          
In Memoriam:  Rodger – In loving memory of Andrew Royston Rodger, 4th Canadian Mounted Rifles, who fell in action on 1st October 1916. – inserted by his loving aunt, Mary Dickie, The Row, Fairlie.  

Profile image courtesy Largs & Millport Weekly News
Headstone image © TWGPP

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