Born in Armenia but living in the Canadian city of Brantford during World War I, Sam Chikejian was the youngest soldier from that city who fought and perished in the war. The local newspaper Brantford Expositor dedicated an article to this young soldier.
According to the publication, Chikejian was determined to voluntarily enroll in military service and go abroad to the battlefields in Europe.
“From what I remember when he went to school, he traveled to Toronto with several Scottish children to join the Scottish regiment. But his mother went to Toronto and brought him back,” said Sam’s nephew, 98-year-old Andy Chichakian from Hamilton.
But no matter how hard his mother Lusik tried to keep the youngest child at home, Sam made his decision. He signed up for military service and went overseas.
It is possible that he was born in 1899, but it is more likely that he was born in 1903 or 1904. In any case, Sam Chikejian was in England in February 1918, receiving basic training to go to the front. Less than seven months later, he was killed in action and was buried in the Ontario cemetery in the Sains-lès-Marquion commune in France.
Local historian Jeffrey Moyer has long known the story of Private Sam Chikejian. “He was the youngest Brantford man to fight and die in World War I,” he remarked.