CEF Soldier Detail

Dispatch Runner Thomas Charles Longboat
Died: January 9, 1949

Regimental Number:
862805
Survived War:
Yes
Force:
Army
Regiment:
Canadian Engineers
Battalion:
2nd CE Battalion
Company:
Headquarters
Place of Birth:
Brant Township, Bruce County, Ontario
Country:
Canada
Next of Kin:
Loretta Longboat, wife. Caledonia, Ontario
Address at Enlistment:
Caledonia, Ontario
Date of Birth:
July 4, 1885
Trade or Calling:
Professional Runner
Marital Status:
Married
Prior Military Experience:
Yes
Place of Enlistment:
Brantford, Ontario
Date of Enlistment:
February 17, 1916
Age at enlistment:
30
Height:
5 Feet 11 Inches
Chest:
40 Inches
Expansion:
5 Inches
Religion:
Church of England
Enlisted or Conscripted:
Enlisted
Saw service in:
Europe    
Cause of Death:
Survived
Battle Died/Wounded:
Date of Death:
January 9, 1949
Age at Death:
63
Buried at:
Six Nations Grand River Reserve Cemetery
Plot:
Commemorated:
Canadian Sports Hall of Fame
 
Prisoner of war:
No
Interned:
Gender:
Male
Ethnic Origin:
Native American
Research Notes

180th Battalion Nominal Roll 

His Onondaga Indian name was Cogwagee.

Rank Regiment Unit Company
Dispatch Runner Canadian Engineers 2nd CE Battalion Headquarters
Private Canadian Infantry 125th Battalion
Lance Corporal Canadian Infantry 180th Battalion
Dispatch Runner Canadian Engineers 107th Pioneer Battalion Headquarters
Private Canadian Infantry 180th Battalion

An Onondaga from the Six Nations Grand River Reserve, a world champion long-distance runner. In 1907, he won the Boston Marathon. In 1909 he won the world professional marathon championships at Madison Square Gardens in New York City. As a despatch carrier with the 107th Pioneer Battalion in France, Longboat ran messages and orders between units. He also kept in competitive form by racing in inter-battalion sporting contests, many of which he won. At the 1918 Canadian Corps Dominion Day competitions, Longboat won the eight-mile [13-kilometre] race.

The famous runner was wounded twice during his time of service. Once he was declared dead, but he survived the war and returned to Canada in 1919 [Wounds are not shown in Longboat's military service record, which would have shown such casualties. This information may have come from reporting errors by the Press, or rumours]. Tom Longboat died in 1949 at the age of 62. He is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame and the Indian Hall of Fame.

TypeDateDescription
Newspaper Extract 8/14/1914 Champion marathon runner Tom Longboat among the first to enlist
Newspaper Extract 6/28/1917 Tom Longboat wins June 1917 sports competition in France